Posts Tagged ‘ texting while driving ’

CDC: Teen Smoking, Sex Down, Texting Biggest New Danger

Friday, June 13th, 2014

Fewer American teenagers are having sex or smoking cigarettes, according to new figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, but public messaging efforts on the dangers of texting while driving and healthy eating remain largely ineffective in curbing dangerous behaviors.  More from NBC News:

The latest federal look at teenage behavior is reassuring and suggests that some safety messages are getting through to American youth.

On the downside, kids are fatter than ever before and just a third are eating anywhere near as many fruits and vegetables as they need to stay healthy. And less than a third are getting enough sleep.

And a very troubling new statistic shows that more than 40 percent of teenagers who drive cars admit to having texted or emailed while driving recently.

But on the whole, it’s a snapshot of progress. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which organizes the every-other-year survey, was especially pleased about the drop in smoking.

“I think it’s really encouraging that we’re seeing the lowest cigarette smoking rate ever,” CDC director Dr. Tom Frieden told NBC News.

“We’ve actually reached the goal that the nation set for ourselves for 2020 early. So that’s one of the most positive trends that we see here — down to 15.7 percent — less than one out of six kids in our high schools is smoking. That’s great news.”

Image: Texting while driving, via Shutterstock

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Smoking Ban in Cars with Kids Proposed in Massachusetts

Thursday, May 16th, 2013

Legislation that would ban adults from smoking in cars where children in car seats are riding, nicknamed the “Little Lungs” bill, is under consideration in Massachusetts.  The website Wicked Local has the story:

Rep. Paul Heroux, a freshman representative from Attleboro, wants to make it illegal to smoke with children in the car, citing health risks from secondhand smoke. Heroux said the proposed law could be enforced in a manner similar to the law banning texting while driving.

“If an officer sees it, you are busted,” Heroux said after testifying Tuesday on his legislation (H 1984), dubbed “an act to protect little lungs” and cosponsored by Reps. Mary Keefe, D-Worcester; Thomas Sannicandro, D-Ashland; and Marjorie Decker, D-Cambridge.

Any driver or passenger who violates the law would be subject to a $100 fine. Police officers would not be able to search or inspect a motor vehicle, or its contents, the driver, or a passenger solely because the vehicle was pulled over for the smoking violation, according to the legislation, which would apply to vehicles including children who are required to be secured by a child passenger restraint.

Heroux acknowledged his proposal would not be easy to enforce but said he hopes it would make smokers think twice before lighting up with children in the car.

Heroux also said a smoking ban when children are in the car would raise awareness about the dangers of secondhand smoke, which led the Legislature and Gov. Mitt Romney to pass a 2004 law banning smoking in most workplaces.

Image: Cigarettes and pacifier, via Shutterstock

 

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Teen Convicted of Homicide After Texting While Driving

Thursday, June 7th, 2012

A Massachusetts teenager has been convicted of vehicular homicide for a 2011 car accident that resulted in the death of one man and serious injury to a passenger, CNN.com is reporting.  Eighteen-year-old Aaron Deveau was texting while driving.  From CNN:

“I made a mistake,” Deveau said Wednesday after his mother told the court he would not intentionally hurt anyone. “If I could take it back, I would take it back.”

Judge Stephen Abany sentenced the teen to two and a half years on the vehicular homicide charge and two years on the texting and causing injury charge. He will serve one year concurrently on both charges and the balance of both charges is suspended for five years. His license will be suspended for 15 years.

“There are no winners today,” Essex County District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett said in a statement. “A beloved grandfather is dead. A once active woman can no longer work and is still racked with pain from her injuries and a young man is going to jail. When we get behind the wheel of a car, we are obligated to drive with care. … As we saw in this case, in a split second, many lives are forever changed.”

Image: Texting while driving, via Shutterstock.

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