At the conclusion of a two-day summit on distracted driving in Washington, D.C. today, U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood announced a series of actions the Obama Administration and the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) are taking to help put an end to distracted driving.
- President Obama signed an Executive Order directing federal employees not to engage in text messaging while driving government-owned vehicles; when using electronic equipment supplied by the government while driving; or while driving privately owned vehicles when they're on official government business.
- Making permanent restrictions on the use of cell phones and other electronic devices in rail operations.
- Banning text messaging altogether, and restrict the use of cell phones by truck and interstate bus operators.
- Disqualifying school bus drivers convicted of texting while driving, from maintaining their commercial driver's licenses.
LaHood also called on state and local governments to work with USDOT to reduce fatalities and crashes by making distracted driving part of their state highway plans, and by continuing to pass state and local laws against distracted driving in all types of vehicles, especially school buses. The full webcast of the summit will be available online later this week.