NSC Asks Employers to Review Their Cell Phone Policies
April is observed as Distracted Driving Awareness Month and as part of this campaign, the National Safety Council (NSC) is asking employers to take a look once again at their cell phone use policies.
Kelly Nantel, NSC vice president, said that NSC hopes all employers will ask their employees to disconnect and just drive and educate them about the dangers of distracted driving. Recently, PG&E, a member of NSC, is working to increase awareness of distracted driving by encouraging the public to take the phone-free pledge.
In 2016, PG&E employees have driven 151 million miles. According to its cell phone policy, employees are prohibited to use cell phones while driving on the job. But in case they have to make a call, send a text message, or check their email, they must pull over to a safe port.
It is worthy to note that the NSC has long lobbied for employers to adopt cell phone use policies for their employees. In a statement, NSC said that using a cell phone while operating a vehicle is risky, and when employees are involved in cell phone-related crashes within the scope of their employment, employers can be held legally responsible.
John Higgins, vice president of PG&E’s Safety and Health, emphasized the fact that we share the same roads and encouraged the public to join them and take the pledge to drive phone-free and avoid other forms of distracted driving.
- According to a recent NSC survey, two-thirds of drivers said another’s driver distraction has caused them to feel unsafe while 25 percent felt their own distractions have put them or someone else at risk.
- Approximately 80 percent of crashes involve some form of distraction within three seconds before the event.
- A driver is four times as likely to crash when using a cell phone while driving.
Reducing Distracted Driving Crashes
As a Kentucky Accident Attorney, I applaud PG&E for leading the way in taking the phone-free pledge during this distracted driving awareness month. I likewise encourage all employers in the state to participate in this campaign and give their best efforts to reduce distracted driving incidents.
When you text and drive, you are putting not only your life at risk, but also that of your passengers, other motorists, and pedestrians, too. I completely agree with Mr. Higgins that we share the same road, and with that, it is our duty to become responsible employers and drivers. Wherever and whenever we drive, follow the best practices, observe traffic laws, and stay focused on the road.