If you consider a call necessary and appropriate, follow these tips:
- Use a hands-free device
- Secure your phone within easy reach
- Let the person with whom you are speaking know that you are driving and will suspend the call if necessary
- Don't take notes or look up phone numbers while driving
- Do use your phone to call for help in an emergency
The following strategies can help minimize the risk of distractions while in your vehicle and let you focus on driving:
- Always buckle up, keep your hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road.
- Know your vehicle and where the controls are located. As much as possible, preset your preferences before you go and adjust them when you are stopped.
- Try to schedule times for breaks and meals to avoid being on the road at these times. If you must eat or drink in your car, unwrap packages or remove lids while the car is stopped. Pull over to deal with children in the back seat. Secure pets in a separate location so they won't distract the driver.
- Personal grooming is important to everyone, but give yourself enough time to get ready before you get in your car, or wait until you get to your destination to freshen up.
- Avoid leaning over to search for items such as your sunglasses, mobile phone and wallet while your car is in motion. Take a minute to check to make sure you have everything before you go or wait until you're stopped to look for items inside the car.
If you must make or receive a call:
- Keep conversations brief and avoid engaging in stressful or emotional conversations. Advise the person to whom you are speaking that you are driving and, if necessary, suspend the call or safely pull off the road.
- Be familiar with handset or hands-free features such as speed dial, redial and voice-activated functions. Program frequently-dialed numbers on your handset.
- When dialing manually, dial only when stopped, or have a passenger dial for you. Consider using a hands-free device to make it easier to keep both hands on the wheel.Ensure that the hands-free device is in place before operating a vehicle.
Novice and Teen Drivers
Most people learn to drive in their teens. But whether a person learns in his or her teens or later, learning to drive requires focus. Even after a person receives a license, education continues. In fact, some jurisdictions formally recognize the ongoing learning process through the use of graduated licensing laws that apply additional restrictions on teen drivers.
It is vitally important that new drivers recognize that learning to drive requires complete attention to the task. Just as you can't learn to play football or the piano while talking on your mobile phone, you can't learn to drive while talking on your mobile phone.
Government agencies and organizations
- National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA)
- National Council of State Legislatures (NCSL)
Industry associations and organizations
- American Automobile Association Foundation for Traffic Safety — Researches the causes of automobile accidents and educates the public about avoiding problems on the road
- Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association (CWTA) — "Focus on Driving" interactive website raises awareness about driver distraction
- CTIA The Wireless Association — Provides consumer resources, legislative updates and other information on responsible driving
- Safe America — Advances safety at home, work and leisure activities by distributing safety products and educational programming
For more information or to share driving tips, see these useful safety tip postcards:
Features, Accessories and Apps
Mobile Device Features and Accessories That Promote Responsible Driving
It is important that drivers understand how they can use the features on their phone to limit distractions. For example, several features enable drivers to keep their eyes on the road when engaging in a phone call, including voice dialing, voice answering, automatic answering and text-to-speech applications that can be used for listening and verbally responding to texts . Of course, drivers can use voicemail to take a message when driving conditions indicate that they should avoid secondary tasks.
Drivers may want to use hands-free features that enabling a driver to talk while keeping both hands on the wheel. Motorola mobile phones can be operated hands-free through a speakerphone function or by connecting to a headset. Other features that support hands-free include one-touch dialing, automatic answer, voice dialing and caller ID.
Most importantly, whether a driver is using a hands-free device or a handheld mobile phone, he or she still needs to exercise good driving judgment before deciding to take or make a call.
Applications That Promote Responsible Driving
MY MotoSpeak uses text-to-speech and speech-to-text technology so your texts are read to you. You can dictate a response and even initiate a text – all hands-free when using one of our MY MotoSpeak-enabled Bluetooth headsets or in-car speakerphones and your phone. Additional MY MotoSpeak features that assist drivers include:
- Text message sender ID which automatically reads out who has texted you
- with the option to “listen now?”
- Acronym translation; when the text message is read aloud, the device translates 150 commonly used text acronyms, such as ‘lol’, ‘btw’ and ‘l8r’, so users will never miss the meaning of a message
Text message sender ID which automatically reads out who has texted you with the option to “listen now?” Acronym translation; when the text message is read aloud, the device translates 150 commonly used text acronyms, such as ‘lol’, ‘btw’ and ‘l8r’, so users will never miss the meaning of a message.
Motorola Assist recognizes when you shouldn’t be bothered, like when you’re sleeping or in a meeting. After hours, it only lets important calls through. It even knows when you’re driving and can automatically read out new text messages or play music. When you’re at home it can announce calls. You can set actions and exceptions so that they work exactly how you want them to. Learn more about Motorola Assist
Without touching your smart phone at all, you can get directions, set a reminder or do just about anything—just by talking. Say “OK Google Now” to get started. Say “Tell me how to get home,” and touchless control will get you there. Tell it to remind you to stop for groceries in 10 minutes, and you'll be alerted. Say "show me traffic conditions," and it gives you up-to-the-minute traffic data your location. Because you teach it your voice it’s always ready to respond to you.
In many parts of the world, including Canada and the U.S., legislators have imposed restrictions on the use of telecommunications equipment in the vehicle. Three of the most prevalent restrictions are: state by state mandated use of hands-free equipment for calls while driving; state by state bans on texting while driving; and graduated licensing requirements that prohibit teens from any mobile phone use, including hands-free calling, while driving. Drivers should check the driving laws in their area to determine their specific requirements.
The dangers of texting while driving are self-evident. We support laws that ban typing and reading text messages while driving.
In addition, we support thoughtful legislation intended to address the causes of distracted driving. Such legislation will not only address mobile phone use but the other distractions faced by drivers. It will emphasize the importance of driver education and provide strict penalties when distracted driving directly leads to an accident. If hands-free use is called out, we urge that any such requirement has an exception for emergency situations.