November 4, 2014

Should Texting And Driving Be A Criminal Offence?

Since the Distracted Driving law was implemented in 2009, texting and driving has been a hot topic. With texting being one of the main forms of mobile communication for both teens and adults, the implementation of this law hit close to home.

While it may have seen some resistance when it was first implemented, a recent poll suggests that the majority of Canadians believe that texting while driving should be a criminal offence. In a survey of about 1,500 Canadian this past winter, 84% said that texting and driving should be criminal. This was higher than the 74% that said that general phone use should be a criminal offence. Under the distracted driving law in Ontario, you can be given a fine of $280 but will not receive any demerits.

Texting and driving wasn’t the only behind the wheel activity that was poled in this survey. Canadian’s were also asked if they felt the following activities should be criminal offences:

  • Putting makeup on while driving: 66% of people
  • Distracted driving in general: 58% of people
  • Eating while driving: 33% of people
  • Adjust the radio or music: 14% of people

It would seem that, overall, Canadians feel that texting and driving is the most serious type of distracted driving. We’re curious to hear what our readers think. Should texting and driving be a criminal offence?

One thought on “Should texting and driving be a criminal offence?

  1. Certainly it should be a criminal offence equal to that of impaired driving. People know the danger involved in the operation of a cell phone while driving, and the accidents are on par with impaired driving. Impaired drivers possibly are short of a criminal intent that being a mes rea. Those who text while driving fulfill both the forth thought of the crime ( mens rea ) and the action of doing it ( actu reus ( sic )). The only reason society has not to make the change is that drunks are all viewed as moral deviants.

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