In most states, if somebody is texting behind the wheel and causes a crash that injures or kills someone, the penalty can be as light as a fine.Utah is much tougher.
After a crash here that killed two scientists — and prompted a dogged investigation by a police officer and local victim’s advocate — Utah passed the nation’s toughest law to crack down on texting behind the wheel. Offenders now face up to 15 years in prison.
The new law, which took effect in May, penalizes a texting driver who causes a fatality as harshly as a drunken driver who kills someone. In effect, a crash caused by such a multitasking motorist is no longer considered an “accident” like one caused by a driver who, say, runs into another car because he nodded off at the wheel. Instead, such a crash would now be considered inherently reckless.
Okay folks, the gloves are off. It's time to talk about where this behavior comes from. We are a nation that values multi-tasking. Folks that get the job done. We eat on the run. We drink on the run. We listen to books on tape. We have teleconferences from our cars. We think sleep is for losers. Why are we surprised that accidents occur when we are doing more than one thing at a time (seriously, please let me know what you think of the simulation)?