Stormwatch

Drivers are still distracted

Local - 7/1/2013 11:43 PM
OAK HILL - It has long been known that using a cell phone while driving is distracting.

"Your vision's impaired either way.  Whether you're drinking and driving, or you're texting on the phone, you took your eyes right off the road," said Walt Stark of Oak Hill.

"It's like worse than I think drunk driving, I think," said Aidan Rooney of Fairfield, Connecticut.

Using a handheld device has been against the law in West Virginia for some time.  But, it was a secondary offense, meaning police could not pull over an offender simply for using a handheld device.  Drivers had to be pulled over for another offense first, then they could be ticketed for the cell phone use, until now.  Using a cell phone while driving is now a primary offense in the State of West Virginia.  Newswatch set up a camera at an intersection in Oak Hill Monday evening to see how many folks could have been pulled over for using their phones while driving.  In that half hour, we saw three people at one stop light using their cell phones.  Two were talking on the phone, and one was texting.

"People pass me on 19, and they're sitting there texting...65 miles per hour or 70 miles per hour, they're texting," said Stark.

The people we spoke with seemed to agree with the new change to the law.

"From where I'm from, Fairfield, Connecticut, we have that law too.  But, we've had it for a while.  And, it's dangerous when you do it.  So, i think it's a good law," said Rooney.

"That's just like telling your kid 'No, you can't have this' at the store, but you're looking out for the best of their interests," said Stark.

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