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Auto Makers Introducing More Gadgets to Distract Young Drivers

Posted on October 14, 2011 to

In an effort to express its concern for safe teen driving, the Ford Motor Company sponsored several clinics on safe driving at high schools across the country. As reported at tusconsentinel.com, the clinics reinforce traffic laws and the dangers of distracted driving. In a similar effort, BMW launched a series of ads about the risks of distracted driving.

It is part of efforts by automakers to curb distracted driving on America’s roads. However, the tusconsentinel.com report pointed out that at the same time automakers are telling teens to avoid distracted driving, they are making cars with high-tech features that encourage multi-tasking while driving.

For example, Ford’s new SNYC system allows drivers to make telephone calls, listen to text messages and play music through a series of voice commands. BMW’s ConnectedDrive allows calling, e-mailing and reading text messages all while driving. Automakers say the new features are an effort to appeal to the younger car buyer who is dependent on staying in touch even while driving.

The U.S. Department of Transportation estimated that distracted driving caused 5,474 deaths in 2009. In light of that, do you think the new automobile features described above are a good idea?

Koonz, McKenney, Johnson, DePaolis & Lightfoot, L.L.P.

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