SUVs Are Latest Tool In Effort To Stop Texting While Driving

Ford SUV

SUVs have become the latest line of defense for police to spot and stop drivers who are texting while behind the wheel.

No one should be texting while driving, but most drivers have done it now and then and many do it as a habit. It’s a bad habit, and one that can cost people their lives, but that hasn’t been enough to convince them to put down their phones.

There are 40 states that have passed laws that make texting while driving illegal which does make you wonder what the other states are thinking. Those laws mean drivers have gotten pretty savvy about keeping their texting unnoticed. Although some hold their phones right up in plain sight, others hold their phones low in their lap to avoid detection by any passing police vehicles.

The state of New York has found a new weapon to combat this particular technique in the form of a fleet of 32 unmarked, full-size SUVs that its state troopers will now be driving along its highways. The higher vantage point will let them look down into vehicles as they pass and see a driver texting even if their phone is in their lap.

New York has been cracking down on texting drivers particularly hard and doing everything they can to get drivers to break the habit. Governor Cuomo even relabeled 91 rest areas as “Texting Zones” to reinforce the idea that you need to pull over before you text. There are even signs reading, “It can wait. Text stop 5 miles.”

They’re also one of just twelve states that don’t allow the use of handheld cell phones while driving. Motorists caught breaking the law by using a device to talk or text face fines of up to $200 as well as five penalty points on their driving record, up from three.

All these measures are a reminder of just how serious a problem texting and driving has become and will hopefully make people think twice before they disregard the law and end up paying the price not in dollars or points, but lost lives.

Nicole Wakelin fell in love with cars as a teenager when she got to go for a ride in a Ferrari. It was red and it was fast and that was all that mattered. Game over. She considers things a bit more carefully now, but still has a weakness for fast, beautiful cars. Nicole also writes for NerdApproved and GeekMom.