Taking Action Against Distracted Drivers - Mountain News : News

default avatar
Welcome to the site! Login or Signup below.
|
Not you?||
Logout|My Dashboard

Taking Action Against Distracted Drivers

Print
Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Friday, January 10, 2020 10:54 am | Updated: 11:07 am, Fri Jan 10, 2020.

Recently, the Mountain News has received several phone calls from readers in regards to California Highway Patrol (CHP) surveying four-way stops on the mountain. Of the complaints, a consensus question arose: Why is CHP nabbing motorists at four-way stops instead of patrolling the main roads?

“We are consistently answering calls to various cases,” said Officer Jacob Griede, from CHP in Running Springs. 

Griede explained the CHP department in Running Springs dispatches a limited number of units to patrol the entire mountain.

“If you do not see [CHP] at one location, it may be in direct relation to the number of units we have out at one time. We cover as many areas as we can with three or four units out on the whole mountain,” Griede said. 

On the topic of motorist safety, Griede talked, from ten years of experience, about his encounters with drivers being distracted while operating a motor vehicle. “I’ve seen people adjusting the radio, eating, texting and talking on the cellphone while operating a vehicle,” he said. 

“California’s distracted driving laws have been saving lives for a decade now,” said former State Senator Joe Simitian, who authored the state’s hands-free and no-texting laws. 

A new addition to California legislature has been published on the www.ca.gov website. Although it will not go into effect until July 1, 2021, Assembly Bill 47 will “further penalize distracted drivers by adding a point to their license for using a handheld device while behind the wheel,” www.ca.gov states. 

The information provided by the www.ca.gov states, when the law goes into effect, drivers convicted of violating the state’s hands-free law could receive a point on their record for the subsequent 36 months.

A quick web search for advanced driver assistance technologies (ADAS) will direct you to the www.AAA.com website; which states ADAS is a group of safety functions designed to implement improved safety for drivers and reduce the severity of traffic accidents. 

According to a new study conducted by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, a report found drivers who use driver-assisted technologies were more likely to be distracted. This includes cell phone use, adjusting the car radio, or taking their eyes off the road. “The study authors say the disparity could reflect ‘a lack of trust in the automated systems’,” the article stated. 

Researchers at the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety concluded that long-term use of ADAS can result in disengaged drivers. ADAS is The research stated that those who are familiar with ADAS technology “were more likely to drive distracted when these systems were active than when they were not.” The research also showed how drivers with minimal knowledge of ADAS technology were more likely to be attentive drivers.

“We see the same amount of distracted driving incidents during the holiday season,” said the Arrowhead CHP spokesman, “When I first moved up here, I noticed people tailgating behind me as I drove on the main roads. Remember to drive slow; take your time getting to your destination,” Griede said. 

Griede continued to discuss visiting tourists to the San Bernardino mountains and how the number of motorists can increase on Highway 18 and 330. 

“There are more cars on the road…. don’t be distracted while driving,” said Griede. 

According to www.CA.gov, California law prohibits the use of a cellphone or any electronic wireless communication device while driving a motor vehicle. However, the website states that devices can be used if they are specifically designed and configured to allow voice-operated and hands-free operation and used in that manner while driving.”  

Another common issue brought up by many mountain residents on social media, is drivers who get closer than a single car’s length to the vehicle in front of them while driving the mountain roads. 

“Don’t let other drivers stress you out while you are driving. If available, use a turnout to pull over and let them pass,” Griede said, “It’s illegal to flash your brights at someone for driving slower than you. You never know if an animal could jump out into the road. Take it slow on the road.” 

For more information on Assembly Bill 47 please visit www.ca.gov. 

  • Discuss

Welcome to the discussion.

1 comment:

  • Localguy posted at 3:37 pm on Mon, Jan 13, 2020.

    Localguy Posts: 0

    I recently received a citation for rolling through a stop sign on an empty residential  street mid week. There is no way this type of enforcement benefits the community. In fact, it accomplishes the opposite. CHP should not be enemy of the local community. It would be great if they were able to help keep order on the weekends with all the visitors. I no longer feel welcome in my own neighborhood. How can we respect them when they are so petty? Any solutions? Ideas?