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Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications (2021)

Chapter: Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies

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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 2 - Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2021. Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26082.
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4 In the first phase of the study, Westat conducted an extensive review of existing legislation, strategies, and enforcement practices that address distracted driving while using electronic devices. This included: • A review of existing legislation via a literature and Internet search; • An assessment of the strength of the distracted driving laws in the U.S. states and Canadian provinces; • A statistical cluster analysis to aid in the selection of a sample of jurisdictions; and • An in-depth review of legislation, enforcement practices, and public awareness strategies in the selected sample jurisdictions, conducted via an Internet scan and telephone discussions with key stakeholders. The methodology and findings for each of these components, as well as the next steps in the study, are detailed in the following sections. 2.1 Review of Existing Legislation Information on the key components of existing legislation was initially identified and orga- nized via a thorough literature and Internet search for 50 U.S. states, the District of Columbia, and 10 Canadian provinces. Local ordinances were not considered in the review of existing legislation. 2.1.1 Methodology for Scan of Legislation Different components of the law were identified to help classify and sort jurisdictions by the strength of the law. These were summarized into categories for analysis. Key components captured in a customized database were: • Violation type: primary or a secondary. • Devices, drivers, road conditions, and behaviors covered under the law. • Affected roadways and specific locations where the law is in effect (e.g., school zones, work zones). • Whether the law is in effect at all times (vehicle is in motion and when it is stationary) or only when the vehicle is in motion. • Exemptions to the law (e.g., ability to use navigation systems, emergency personnel use). • Date law went into effect. • Penalties and sanctions for offenses (including incremental fines and penalties). • Connections to other laws. • Ongoing efforts to update the law. • Exact language of the law as it is written. C H A P T E R 2 Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies

Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies 5 Westat developed search criteria and a list of acceptable websites for researching existing legislation, including national and state/provincial websites. National sites included were those of the National Conference of State Legislatures, Governors Highway Safety Association, Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, NHTSA, National Safety Council, Transport Canada, and the Canadian Automobile Association. In addition, project staff scanned state and provincial traffic and transport agency websites as well as jurisdiction motor vehicle codes. Project staff were trained on the research protocol and on methods for documenting the information. All entries were examined by a second reviewer to confirm accuracy and agreement in interpretation of the law. The review of existing legislation was conducted in January 2019. 2.1.2 Findings for Scan of Legislation Key findings regarding distracted driving legislation specific to electronic device use for 50 U.S. states, the District of Columbia, and 10 Canadian provinces are presented in the following. Please note that these findings represent the state of the laws as of January 2019. Several of the jurisdictions have revised their laws since the scan was completed. Type of Violation In the United States, there are two main types of traffic violations: primary and secondary. A primary violation is an offense for which a law enforcement officer can stop a driver and issue a citation. A secondary violation is one where the driver can receive a citation for the violation only after the law enforcement officer observes a primary offense. In the majority of the jurisdictions, the distracted driving law was a primary offense (90%, N = 55), a few jurisdictions had a distracted driving law that was a secondary offense (8%, N = 5), and only one jurisdiction had no distracted driving law at the time of this analysis. All of the Canadian provinces were considered a primary equivalent since the primary and secondary law structure does not exist in Canada. Behaviors Covered Three behaviors are more commonly addressed by distracted driving laws: • Texting on an electronic device, • Manipulating or dialing on an electronic device, and • Using a handheld electronic device. Laws with texting restrictions prohibit a driver from using a phone to send a text message. Manipulating or dialing is an expansion of texting. Under this law, drivers are restricted from dialing or using their fingers to engage in some activity on the phone (e.g., texting, browsing, sending emails). This categorization covers all of the behaviors of a texting law, as well as the manipulating or dialing restrictions. Laws restricting handheld use are the most inclusive and restrict the driver from holding the phone to text, browse the Internet, talk on a call, and so forth. The most common behaviors addressed in the laws were reading and texting, followed closely by handheld use (see Table 1). In this initial review of the legislation, speaking or manipulating/ dialing were behaviors addressed in only two jurisdictions. Drivers Covered Distracted driving laws can vary with respect to the population of drivers who are covered under the law. In most jurisdictions, the electronic device use law covered all drivers (N = 58); however, there were some jurisdictions where the law specifically identified particular types of drivers (see Table 2). For example, the wording in both Arizona (law applied only to school bus drivers, teenagers, and GDL drivers) and Missouri laws [law applied only to commercial driver

6 Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications license (CDL) drivers, teenagers, and GDL drivers] specifically addressed certain types of drivers, and neither law included language for the general population. Conversely, other jurisdictions included language addressing the general population as well as language specifically addressing other types of drivers. When the Law Is Enforceable The wording used when developing the law varies with respect to whether the vehicle needs to be in motion in order for electronic device use to be considered a violation. Sometimes the wording makes it difficult to interpret the intent of the law. Some laws indicate that a driver is only in violation if the vehicle is in motion. If nothing else was specified, these were treated as “in motion only” laws. When the language of the law indicated that electronic device use is permitted when the vehicle is stopped at a traffic signal, it was also treated as an “in motion only” law. Other laws specify that for any vehicle in operation on a public roadway, whether in motion or stopped at a traffic signal, use of an electronic device is a violation. These were categorized as “at all times” laws. The type of driving covered when the law is applicable is divided fairly evenly; 30 jurisdictions include laws both when the vehicle is stationary (such as at a stop light) and when the vehicle is in motion, and 29 jurisdictions indicate that the law is only in effect when the vehicle is in motion. One state, Arizona, does not specify. Exemptions to the Distracted Driving Law A number of exemptions to the laws were noted during the initial scan. Most commonly, jurisdictions indicated that contacting emergency services (N = 48), use by emergency personnel (N = 41), and hands-free use (N = 34) were acceptable exemptions to the distracted driving law. The most common exemptions mentioned in the laws are presented in Table 3. Penalties Under Distracted Driving Law Some jurisdictions assign points to the driver’s license for certain moving violations, and many jurisdictions suspend or revoke the driver’s license when a certain number of points are Behavior Number of Jurisdictions Percent Reading 38 62 Texting 31 51 Handheld 27 44 Speaking 2 3 Manipulation/dialing 2 3 Notes: Data were collected in January 2019. A distracted driving law may cover more than one behavior; therefore, the total is more than 100%. Table 1. Behavior covered by distracted driving law. Driver Number of Jurisdictions Percent All drivers 58 CDL drivers 1 (law does not include all drivers) School bus drivers 2 (for 1 jurisdiction the law does not include all drivers) Under 18 and/or GDL drivers 6 (for 2 jurisdictions the law does not include all drivers) 95 2 3 10 Note: Data were collected in January 2019. Table 2. Drivers covered by distracted driving law.

Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies 7 accrued. The number of points assigned varies by jurisdiction, and a higher number of points assigned to the violation is associated with an increased severity of punishment. Additionally, aspects of a motorist’s driving record (including points accumulated) may be reported to insurance companies, which may use them in determining premium rates or whether to renew or cancel an insurance policy. Most jurisdictions do not issue points for the first offense of the distracted driving law (66%, N = 40), but may issue warnings. Five jurisdictions issue a penalty of one to two points for a first offense (8%); 12 jurisdictions issue three to four points (20%); and three jurisdictions (New York, Manitoba, and Prince Edward Island) issue five or more points for the first offense (5%). In addition, there are 10 jurisdictions with an incremental penalty scale, issuing a higher number of points for subsequent offenses (16%). Fines Under the Distracted Driving Law Most jurisdictions have a fine associated with a violation of their distracted driving law, but the amount varies considerably, as detailed in Table 4. Note that Missouri’s law does not carry a fine. In other traffic safety issues, such as seat belt enforcement or speeding, a higher fine has been associated with a stronger law and resulted in higher rates of compliance (Nichols et al. 2014; Elvik 2014). However, in many jurisdictions, fines may be lower due to constituents’ inability to afford a higher fine. This does not necessarily mean that the jurisdiction does not view distracted driving as an important safety issue, but rather that it is related to the socio- economic status of the residents. Attaching a higher fine might be viewed as unrealistic, thus making it less likely for the law to be enforced. There are 32 jurisdictions with an incremental fine structure, issuing a higher fine following subsequent offenses (52%). Exemption Number of Jurisdictions Percent Contacting emergency services 48 For emergency personnel 41 For hands-free use 34 For navigation 27 Use of single-touch features 18 For work purposes 13 When affixed to vehicle surface 9 Receiving safety messages 7 Other 5 79 67 56 44 30 21 15 11 8 Notes: Data were collected in January 2019. Distracted driving laws may include more than one exemption; therefore, the total is more than 100%. Table 3. Exemptions to the distracted driving laws. Fine range Number of Jurisdictions Percent No fine 1 Up to $25 4 $26–$75 12 $76–$100 15 $101–$150 7 $151–$200 2 Over $200 19 2 7 20 25 11 3 31 Note: Data were collected in January 2019. Table 4. Fines under the distracted driving law.

8 Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications 2.2 Assessing the Strength of the Law Following the initial scan of existing legislation, a protocol was developed for assessing the strength of the laws across all the jurisdictions. The protocol was provided to the project panel for review. The revised protocol is shown in Appendix A. 2.2.1 Methodology for Assessing Strength of the Laws A classification scheme and points system were developed to sort the jurisdictions by the strength of the laws. This classification was necessary for the cluster analysis to create groupings of states and provinces with similarly structured legislation. Initially, the primary components of the distracted driving laws were identified. Subsequently, a point system was developed for classification. The components and point system are detailed in Table 5. Once all points were assigned, it was possible to determine a total score for each of the juris- dictions, as presented in the following. 2.2.2 Findings for Assessing Strength of the Laws As indicated in Table 5, eight categories of components were considered in the classification scheme for assessing the strength of the laws, allowing for a score of 0 to 19 points for each jurisdiction. The total score ranged from a high of 17 points to a low of 0 points (as detailed in Table 6). The strength of the law was a primary consideration in the cluster analysis and sample selec- tion. These are detailed in the following section. 2.3 Cluster Analysis and Sample Selection Following the initial scan and ranking of existing distracted driving legislation, a cluster analy- sis of states and provinces with similarly structured legislation grouped the jurisdictions for further study. The cluster analysis was based on the results of the assessment and ranking of the strength of the laws, as detailed in Section 2.2. The objective of the analysis was to obtain a sample of 20 out of 61 jurisdictions (50 U.S. states plus the District of Columbia and 10 Canadian provinces) to include in a more detailed review. The sample selected included a relatively diverse set of laws related to distracted driving, as well as a range of population characteristics, so that the information gathered would cover a range of laws, challenges, and populations. The selected sample represents jurisdictions with stronger distracted driving laws somewhat more heavily, since the objective of the project was to develop model legislation as well as best practices for education and enforcement. 2.3.1 Methodology for Cluster Analysis The methodology for the cluster analysis is described in detail in Appendix B: Proposed Sample of Jurisdictions and Methodology. To generate a sample that covered a range of laws and population characteristics and would not result in a sample with more “strong law” juris- dictions, the researchers used a clustering algorithm to group all 61 jurisdictions into five clus- ters, based on characteristics of their distracted driving laws and populations. (Before settling on this approach, the researchers tested several clustering methods, which are discussed in Section B.2.4.) The researchers then drew a fixed sample of jurisdictions from each cluster, along with at least one alternate jurisdiction per cluster in case one or more selected jurisdictions chose

Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies 9 Component Points Assigned Justification Violation Type No law 0 Primary violations are well received by law enforcement. It is a common belief that if the law is addressing an important traffic safety issue, the violation would be considered a primary offense. Secondary 1 Primary 2 Behaviors Covered* No behavior 0 Law does not enforce any of the behaviors, or there is no law. Texting 1 Limits the enforcement to a two-way communication device, meaning that someone could be manipulating a portable game, but since they are not texting, they cannot be cited, even though the behavior and level of distraction are similar. Manipulating/dialing 2 Additional limitations beyond texting (which would include dialing or manipulating the electronic device) simplify enforcement and expand the types of devices covered to all electronic devices. Handheld 3 More severe and most inclusive and, therefore, easier to enforce Reading or speaking 1 extra point More restrictive, but difficult to enforce. Note that many texting laws do include a reading restriction. Types of Drivers Covered Law does not address any driver populations. 0 Law only addresses specific populations. 1 Less severe and difficult to enforce All drivers 2 All drivers and there are one or more laws that are more stringent for specific populations 1 extra point More restrictive on behaviors covered under the law or increased fines/penalties for special populations, although may be difficult to enforce When Law Is Enforceable Law is not enforced in any situation. 0 Law is not clearly enforceable in any situation, or there is no law. Only when vehicle is in motion 1 Allows for device use during stops in traffic—higher potential for use while driving. At all times (stationary or in motion) 2 Enforceable at all times Penalty Range for First Offense Warning/0 points 0 More points are associated with a stronger penalty and may increase compliance. 1–2 points 1 3–4 points 2 5 or more points 3 Incremental Penalty No 0 Incremental penalty may increase compliance. Yes 1 Fine Range for First Offense No fine 0 Higher range of fines may increase compliance. Low (Up to $25, $26–$75) 1 Medium ($76–$100, $101– $150) 2 High ($151–$200, over $200) 3 Incremental Fine No 0 Incremental fines may increase compliance. Yes 1 *For laws with multiple behaviors covered, the least restrictive and easiest to enforce behavior was used for coding. Table 5. Primary components of distracted driving laws and classification scheme.

10 Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications not to participate. This form of stratification, while somewhat rough, guaranteed that jurisdic- tions with a variety of law and population characteristics were represented in the final sample. The cluster analysis file comprised a number of data sources for each jurisdiction, including details on the different electronic device use laws identified by the Westat study team, data on fatal injuries, licensed drivers, motor vehicle registrations, vehicle miles traveled (VMT), and population. Further details on the data sources are presented in Appendix B. After merging all data sources into a single file, the statistical staff ran quality-control checks to verify that all merging was done correctly, and they checked for any outlying or unexpected data points. During these checks, such variables as fatalities, licensed drivers, vehicle registra- tions, VMT, and number of 15- to 24-year-olds were converted to rates per 1,000 population. Before clustering, the statisticians standardized all variables to have a mean of 0 and a standard error of 1. This effectively weighted each variable in the analysis equally. As a final check, the statistical team looked at the correlation between normalized fatality rate and normalized law strength, calculated by totaling all law strength points. The correlation was −0.57 (p < 0.0001), which is moderate-to-strong, negative, and significantly different from zero. This means that jurisdictions with stronger laws tended to have lower fatality rates, and vice versa. Even though fatality rates included all types of traffic-related fatalities, not just distracted driving–related fatalities, it was encouraging to see that the law strength scoring had the relationship that would be expected with fatality rates. As described in detail in Appendix B, the researchers tested three different clustering methods: hierarchical clustering, K-means, and model-based cluster analysis (Mclust). This was done as a sensitivity analysis; each clustering method has strengths and weaknesses, and the authors wanted to ensure that the different methods independently produced roughly consistent results. All three methods suggested that five clusters were appropriate, and the findings are detailed in the following. 2.3.2 Results of Cluster Analysis As indicated previously, three methods for clustering were tested; K-means was selected because it is best suited to this analysis. K-means does not place any assumptions on the distri- butions of the variables, and it is designed to find an overall optimal solution. Findings of the final K-means model with five clusters are presented in Table 7. U.S. and Canadian Jurisdictions Total Points Ontario Maryland Alberta, British Columbia, Georgia, Manitoba, New York, Prince Edward Island California, Colorado, New Brunswick, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, Oregon, Quebec, Rhode Island, Saskatchewan, Vermont, West Virginia Connecticut, Hawaii, Maine, Nevada Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Washington District of Columbia, Florida, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Nebraska, North Dakota Alaska, Illinois, Mississippi, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Texas, Utah, Virginia Iowa, Minnesota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee Idaho, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Wyoming Missouri Arizona Montana* 17 16 15 14 13 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 0 *No distracted driving law resulted in 0 points across all components. Table 6. Assessing strength of the law, jurisdictions by total points.

Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies 11 The heat map depicted in Table 8 shows how the authors were able to generalize and describe each cluster. Red indicates a cluster is, on average, low in terms of the row variable, and green represents clusters with a higher average value for the row variable. For example, looking at the total population row, Cluster 1 (primarily Canadian provinces) has the lowest average popula- tion, and Cluster 4 (U.S. states with large populations) has the highest average population. Before drawing the sample, a decision was made to discard Montana since, at the time of writ- ing, the state had no distracted driving law in place. In addition, Alaska, Hawaii, Prince Edward Island, and the District of Columbia were discarded due to their unique features making it dif- ficult to generalize any findings to other jurisdictions. Ontario and Maryland were selected with certainty because these jurisdictions have the strongest laws (highest law scores) in Canada and the United States, respectively. After following these parameters, a sample of 18 jurisdictions was selected from a pool of 55 jurisdictions, with representation from each cluster. The authors selected three jurisdictions Cluster General Description of Cluster Jurisdictions in Cluster 1 Canadian provinces and Colorado, stronger laws, lower population Alberta, British Columbia, Colorado, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, Saskatchewan 2 U.S. states and Ontario, relatively stronger laws Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Georgia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Ontario, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, West Virginia 3 U.S. states, moderate-to- small populations, relatively weaker laws Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, Wisconsin, Wyoming 4 U.S. states, large populations, relatively weaker laws California, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, New York, Texas, Virginia 5 U.S. states, weakest laws, high vehicle usage/fatality rates Arizona, Florida, Montana, Nebraska Table 7. Final clusters of U.S. and Canadian jurisdictions. Variable Cluster Number 1 2 3 4 5 Law-Related Variables Violation type Behaviors covered Drivers covered Law enforceable Penalty range Incremental penalty Fine range Incremental fine Non-Law-Related Variables Total population Fatality rate % population ages 15–24 Licensed driver rate Vehicle registration rate VMT per population Table 8. Heat map of average clustering variable value, by cluster.

12 Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications from Cluster 1 because of the similarities in the characteristics across these jurisdictions (pri- marily Canadian provinces). Five out of 13 eligible jurisdictions in the stronger-laws U.S. states cluster were selected because the authors wanted to oversample jurisdictions with strong laws. This left 10 jurisdictions to sample from the remaining three clusters (32 total jurisdictions). The authors sampled from each cluster proportional to its size in order to obtain the required sample; at least one alternate was selected for each cluster. [Sampling was performed using the sample() and sample_frac() functions in R.] The final sample is presented in Table 9, and Figure 1 presents a corresponding map, with the selected jurisdictions shaded in blue. 2.4 In-Depth Review of Selected States and Territories Westat conducted an in-depth review of legislation, enforcement strategies, public aware- ness activities, and other details related to the distracted driving law for the selected jurisdic- tions. During the in-depth review, the research team identified successes, challenges, and lessons learned. Cluster General Description of Cluster Sampled Jurisdiction(s) Alternate(s) 1 Canadian provinces Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec New Brunswick 2 U.S. states, relatively stronger laws Connecticut, Maryland, Maine, Oregon, West Virginia, Vermont Georgia, New Jersey 3 U.S. states, moderate-to-small populations, relatively weaker laws Idaho, Kentucky, Louisiana, New Mexico, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee Missouri, North Dakota 4 U.S. states, large populations, relatively weaker laws Pennsylvania, Virginia California 5 U.S. states, weakest laws Nebraska Arizona Notes: Maryland and Ontario were selected with certainty. Alaska, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Montana, and Prince Edward Island were excluded from selection. Table 9. List of proposed jurisdictions, by sampling stratum (cluster). Figure 1. Map of sampled jurisdictions.

Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies 13 The in-depth review built on the information gathered during the initial scan and included components of the law that were initially identified in the review of legislation but needed further study to clarify or provide additional detail. These components include: • Language of the Law. Identifying whether there was ambiguity in the language that could affect enforcement or adjudication. • Exemptions to the Law. Understanding those exemptions that may affect enforcement or adjudication as well as how exemptions are worded in the law. • Types of Roadways Covered. Identifying whether jurisdictions were enforcing the law on certain types of roadways more than others and whether the law was more stringent for viola- tions on certain roadway types. • Devices Covered. Understanding whether detailed information on the specific device types covered by the law was useful or detrimental to enforcement and adjudication. • Effects of Penalties and Fines. Understanding the measured or perceived effects of higher penalties and fines as well as incremental penalties and fines. • Relationship Between Distracted Driving Laws and Manslaughter Convictions or Jail Time. Understanding the impact of this type of association on how the law is enforced and adjudicated, as well as on driver behaviors. The in-depth review included two components: a detailed Internet scan, and discussions with stakeholders in the U.S. states and Canadian provinces, as detailed in the following sections. 2.4.1 Internet Scan The first step of the in-depth review was a comprehensive examination of state/provincial annual reports, highway safety plans, traffic safety websites, and other literature databases. News articles discussing pending legislation, sharing opinions of law enforcement and other key stake- holders regarding weakness in current legislation, and describing public information campaigns were also reviewed. Data gathered during the web scan included information pertaining to the background or history of the laws—for example, how the law was enacted; enforcement efforts, such as high- visibility campaigns; public outreach and educational efforts; and any data gathered related to enforcement, measuring outreach, and impact of the law on crash rates. The researchers also documented contact information for state/provincial representatives identified throughout the search. 2.4.2 Discussion with State/Provincial Representatives To supplement findings from the Internet scan, telephone discussions were conducted with state/provincial representatives, including representatives from program offices, legislatures, nonprofit agencies, research firms, and law enforcement agencies. Discussion guides were devel- oped for the different types of stakeholders and provided to the project panel for review and approval (see Appendix C). A list of contacts was identified during the web scan and provided to panel members for review. The discussions with stakeholders reviewed a variety of key issues, including: • General information on the law: penalties, fines, wording; • Process of enacting the law, including strategies and challenges; • Making changes to the law; • Enforcement of the law, including strategies and challenges; • Public awareness campaigns and education outreach;

14 Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications • Data collection and evaluation; • Safety culture and political culture; and • Issues related to technology. Multiple attempts were made to contact each of the selected jurisdiction’s representatives, via both email and telephone. Table 10 details the agencies and dates of contact for those stake- holders with whom telephone discussions were conducted. In several jurisdictions, the tele- phone discussions were held with several representatives from different agencies, but only the primary agencies that participated in the calls are listed in the table. As part of the in-depth review, the authors also spoke with Jennifer Smith, the CEO and co-founder of StopDistractions.org, a nonprofit organization that brings together distracted driving victims, victim survivors, foundations, and the general public to build awareness about the dangers of distracted driving. StopDistractions.org has partnered with advocates for dis- tracted driving and electronic device use laws in many of the U.S. states and cities and has been influential in helping to pass legislation. In addition, Westat staff attended the 7th Annual Dis- tracted Driving Summit in Roanoke, Virginia, and spoke with experts from around the country about distracted driving. Overall, representatives in the jurisdictions showed a high level of interest in participating in and receiving the results of the research study. Several agencies were interested in receiving guidance on language for a model law and enforcement techniques, as well as examples of public information and education campaigns. Representatives were committed to reducing distracted driving in their respective jurisdictions and indicated that the issue is dynamic and generally receives growing support and attention from the public. 2.4.3 Summary of Key Findings from In-Depth Review Process of Enacting or Revising a Distracted Driving Law The in-depth review revealed that one of the key strategies when revising a distracted driving law was to build a coalition or team of stakeholders. A number of jurisdictions indicated that including a variety of partners in the process was important to enacting or revising an existing distracted driving law to make it more rigorous. Important partners include relevant state or provincial government agencies such as highway safety, law enforcement, judiciary, and the department of motor vehicles (DMV), as well as political leaders such as legislators and the Jurisdiction Primary Points of Contact Date of Interview Alberta Office of Traffic Safety, Government of Alberta June 26, 2019 Connecticut Highway Safety Office, Connecticut Department of Transportation July 9, 2019 Idaho Highway Safety Office, Idaho Transportation Department July 2, 2019 Maine Maine Bureau of Highway Safety July 2, 2019 Manitoba Manitoba Infrastructure and Manitoba Public Insurance June 25, 2019 Maryland Maryland Highway Safety Office June 25, 2019 Nebraska Nebraska Division of Public Health June 25, 2019 Ontario Safety Policy and Education Branch, Ontario Road Safety Policy Office June 24, 2019 Oregon Transportation Safety Division, Oregon Department of Transportation June 14, 2019 Pennsylvania Pennsylvania Department of Transportation and Pennsylvania State Police July 1, 2019 Quebec Société de l’assurance automobile du Québec July 25, 2019, response in writing due to language barriers Tennessee Tennessee Highway Patrol June 11, 2019 Virginia Highway Safety Office, Virginia DMV and DriveSmart VA July 22, 2019 Table 10. Log of phone discussions on legislation and enforcement of electronic device use.

Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies 15 state governor or provincial lieutenant governor. Nongovernmental stakeholders such as safety organizations and community leaders can also help facilitate and garner support for a new law. Victim advocates may also serve as leading voices for stronger distracted driving laws, as has been the case in Maryland and Pennsylvania. Several jurisdictions felt that it is important to invite groups that might be in opposition to the law to coalition meetings to better understand their concerns and arguments and attempt to address them or achieve a compromise. For example, in some states, issues regarding racial profiling have been raised by different groups; by includ- ing concerned parties, it may be possible to reach a compromise, such as a review of citation demographics on an annual basis. In Alberta, community members participated in the vetting process of a new law or revi- sions to an existing law in order to increase legislative and public acceptance (Daniel 2018). The Connecticut Highway Safety Office gathered stakeholders from the police, DMV, and judicial branch to work together on the distracted driving law. In Maine, the New England AAA played a key role in spearheading recent legislation. In Ontario, distracted driving policy changes were made in cooperation with members of the public, enforcement partners, road safety groups, and community groups in both consultations and a public forum. Coalition partners in Virginia hired a lobbyist to aid them in supporting their transition from a texting law to a hands-free ban. In Oregon, an interdisciplinary task force was created in 2016 to tackle distracted driving. The task force included experts from the fields of transportation, research, law enforcement, communications, health care, the behavioral sciences, and policy, as well as the judicial and legislative branches, with the goal of covering every facet of distracted driving. The task force made recommendations related to necessary data and reporting, legislation and policy, enforce- ment, and education and communication (see Figure 2). The work of the task force supported the revision of the distracted driving law. Source: Oregon Department of Transportation 2017. Figure 2. Oregon distracted driving task force report.

16 Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications Source: Tennessee Highway Patrol 2019. Figure 3. Tennessee introduces hands-free legislation. At the time of the in-depth scan in 2019, several jurisdictions were attempting to update or revise their legislation. One strategy for developing a stronger law is to initially prohibit texting and then develop more rigorous laws over time. This may include adding more rigorous clauses, such as hands-free laws for specific types of roadways (such as work zones) or drivers (such as commercial truck drivers or young drivers). Of the selected jurisdictions, revisions under con- sideration for the 2019 legislative cycle included: • Update to a hands-free law: Maine, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee (see Figure 3), and Virginia; • Update to a primary law: Nebraska; and • Increase in fines: Vermont. In U.S. jurisdictions, one thing to take into consideration when developing or revising a dis- tracted driving law is access to NHTSA 405E funding. In a few jurisdictions, being compliant with the required language to be eligible for 405E funding served as a key source for the wording and content of the law. At the time of writing, there were only four states (Connecticut, Oregon, Maine, and New Jersey) eligible for funding based on the language of their laws. Eligible states can use 50% of the funds for NHTSA Section 402 purposes and 50% for distracted driving purposes, such as funding enforcement efforts and outreach and educational programs. The Connecticut Highway Safety Office convened a team of lawyers, police officers, DMV represen- tatives, and judicial members to develop a law that mirrored the Federal Register requirements for 405E funding. For example, one of the requirements is that the driving test must include

Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies 17 a question on distracted driving. Previously, the DMV had a randomized test that included a distracted driving question in a portion of the administered tests, but the team worked to make this question standard on the exam. Similarly, leaders in Oregon and Maine took steps to design updated legislation that would improve driving behavior and comply with NHTSA 405E requirements. These jurisdictions contacted regional or federal NHTSA staff to ensure that the legislation being considered matched the requirements for NHTSA 405E funding. While other states were interested in applying for NHTSA 405E funding, representatives were concerned about the complexity of the requirements. A few states indicated that model language in line with NHTSA requirements would be helpful since state governments are more inclined to support legislation that is likely to result in additional funding that can be used to support the legislative change. In addition to NHTSA 405E grant money, identifying alternate funding sources was mentioned by several jurisdictions as something to consider when revising or enacting a law. Specifically, when proposing a new law or revision, jurisdictions should identify potential funding oppor- tunities for any special enforcement efforts, education, and outreach that will follow a law change. In addition, when possible, this funding should come from sources outside of the state or provincial government to minimize the potential for legislators to block the bill due to any financial obligations it would pose to the jurisdiction. While several jurisdictions have made recent revisions to their laws, some have not succeeded in passing updated distracted driving laws. These jurisdictions shared some of the challenges they encountered during their attempts to enact or revise their distracted driving laws. In Idaho, businesses and farmers were in opposition to including a hands-free ban to the state’s distracted driving law. Businesses and farmers viewed the inclusion of a hands-free ban as challenging in their work environments. However, in an attempt to influence state legisla- tion, the cities of Hailey, Idaho Falls, Ketchum, Pocatello, and Sandpoint enacted local ordi- nances banning handheld use of cell phones. This method has been successful in moving from secondary to primary seat belt enforcement laws in several states. In addition, the Idaho High- way Safety Office was developing a media campaign to promote hands-free cell phone use. The office was also establishing partnerships with major companies in the state to bring their employees on board by emphasizing the economic benefits of reducing distracted driving. In Virginia, nonprofit organizations led by Drive Smart Virginia have lobbied and worked on revisions to the distracted driving law that would transition from a texting and driving law to a hands-free law. However, in 2019, for the second straight year, the distracted driving legislation was blocked in the closing days of the session after passing in the state’s House and Senate. With each failed attempt, representatives in Virginia spend time analyzing the reasons why the bill failed and address these issues with their next proposal. In December 2019, the Richmond City Council passed a city ordinance to ban the use of handheld cell phones while driving. Language and Interpretation of Distracted Driving Laws The content and wording of distracted driving legislation can affect the ability to enforce the law as well as how well the law is accepted by the motoring public. In some jurisdictions, the language of the law is inclusive or wide-ranging, allowing for a broad interpretation. For example, in Alberta, the law prohibits handheld use of a device for all drivers, on all roadways, whether in motion or stopped. In Ontario, the wording of the distracted driving regulation in the Highway Traffic Safety Act is quite broad and refers to whenever the device is in hand. In court, this has even been enforced in cases where the cell phone was off but was in the hand of the driver. The Connecticut and West Virginia laws are written in such a way that they are open to interpretation. Connecticut’s distracted driving law prohibits drivers from holding a mobile

18 Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications electronic device, including a cell phone, in their hand. This includes instances where the vehicle is at a stop sign or even on the side of the road if the engine of the vehicle is still running. Although the Connecticut law includes many behaviors such as reading, texting, and manipu- lating the device, there is still some room for interpretation. For example, holding the cell phone to look at GPS or listen to music is still permissible, which makes enforcement of the law more challenging. In West Virginia, the language of the law prohibits handheld use of the electronic device, but does not prohibit manipulation of the device if it is mounted using a hands-free device. Addi- tionally, the law is enforceable if the driver is operating a motor vehicle (engine running), includ- ing while temporarily stopped because of traffic, a traffic control device, or other momentary delays. However, the law allows use of an electronic device when operating a motor vehicle after the driver has moved the vehicle to the side of, or off, a highway and halted in a location where the vehicle can safely remain stationary. Several jurisdictions openly discussed the challenges of enforcing distracted driving laws. These challenges often relate to the law covering only certain behaviors or to some of the exemp- tions allowed. For example, prior to the 2019 revisions to Maine’s distracted driving law, the law prohibited texting only while driving and allowed drivers to use a phone to play music, search for directions, or dial. The law was challenging to enforce because it required the officer to prove that the motorist was texting. These exemptions made it more difficult to prove a driver broke the law. Similarly, in Pennsylvania, exemptions in the law such as using GPS or making a call may make it more challenging to enforce the texting law. New Mexico’s and Louisiana’s distracted driving laws only prohibit texting while driving. In New Mexico, like many other jurisdictions, law enforcement may not conduct a search of a cell phone, and there are often difficulties enforcing the law because officers will only issue a citation when they can see a driver blatantly texting while behind the wheel or when they observe erratic driving. In Louisiana, law enforcement indicates that under the current law, drivers who insist that they are using their phones for something other than texting may not be cited, and officers cannot search through someone’s phone due to an individual’s right to privacy. In a few states, the distracted driving law is a secondary offense, so law enforcement cannot pull anyone over for texting unless they see another offense. For example, in Nebraska, it is well known that texting and driving is a secondary offense for young drivers with a GDL, limiting the officer’s ability to change behavior among this high-risk group of drivers. In Idaho, the distracted driving law is for texting while driving and excludes cases where the vehicle is stopped at an intersection or any other type of behavior such as using the GPS. Simi- larly, the distracted driving law in South Carolina requires that, in order to issue a citation, law enforcement must observe the driver texting while the vehicle is in motion; this was also the case for the previous law in Tennessee. This limits some types of enforcement activities, such as those at stops or intersections. Tennessee recently passed a revised distracted driving law (effective July 2019). The new hands-free law includes provisions that allow for enforcement when the vehicle is stopped at a traffic light or stop sign. In Virginia, the law states that it is unlawful to manually enter multiple letters or text. This additional language regarding multiple letters has further limited enforcement capabilities as the citations on texting are contested if there is no evidence of typing multiple letters. During the most recent attempt to revise the law to a hands-free ban, state representatives lobbying the bill wanted to use the word “hold” as opposed to “use” to avoid possible exemptions. As noted previously, this bill was not passed. In Kentucky, the law states that the driver is in violation when using an “electronic commu- nication device” while operating a motor vehicle, which technically places using a smartphone

Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies 19 as a GPS device or even browsing the Internet or social media outside the parameters of the law. Discerning between those who are texting and those using their phone for various other reasons is a difficult task for law enforcement. Exemptions such as those described here affect law enforcement officers’ ability to enforce the law. Due to these challenges, several jurisdictions admitted that electronic device enforcement is not a priority within their law enforcement agencies. A number of jurisdictions designed the language of the laws to reduce these types of limita- tions. In Oregon, the language was revised from a “mobile communication device” to a “mobile electronic device” in order to broaden the definition of device usage and remove many exemp- tions to the statute. Similarly, in Maine, the updated legislation refers to a “handheld electronic device,” which includes cell phones as well as other types of devices. Quebec avoided the com- plexities that can arise from vague definitions of “use” by specifying in the legislation “a driver who is holding a device is presumed to be using it.” Using clear language to describe when electronic device use is allowed when the vehicle is not in motion, such as while contacting emergency personnel, is also important. In addition to enforcement challenges, jurisdictions discussed issues related to prioritizing distracted driving offenses in the adjudication process. Although enforcement rates are high in Connecticut, many citations are dismissed due to the number of citations that need to be processed by the court system. This may be a source of frustration for law enforcement and may have an impact on their willingness to enforce the law if it is not seen as a priority within other agencies in the jurisdiction. Distracted Driving Penalties and Fines While the fines and penalties across the jurisdictions differ substantially, many jurisdictions indicated that the penalty and fine for a distracted driving citation are consistent with other traffic violations in their state or province. In Connecticut, fines were set at $150 for a first violation, $300 for a second, and $500 for any subsequent offense. The law went into effect at the same time that other traffic safety fines were raised, which increased public acceptance of the fine structure. In Alberta, the revision to the distracted driving law in 2016 added a three- point penalty; this change actually made the law more consistent with other traffic violations within the province that also have a three-point penalty. In Ontario, the penalties for distracted driving were increased as part of a package on vulnerable road user amendments, which helped to increase public acceptance. Several jurisdictions pointed to the difficulty in issuing citations with high fines and the need for simultaneous public awareness campaigns to increase public acceptance of enforcement. In some states, law enforcement personnel initially expressed concern over issuing substantial fines. However, with the increase in public education and outreach, it became easier to issue citations over time because drivers could no longer indicate that they were unaware of the law. Several jurisdictions have an incremental fine or penalty structure. In Quebec, incremental fines and penalties were introduced in 2015, then updated in 2018 with fines increasing to a range of $300 to $600 (plus costs) and five demerit points. Société de l’assurance automobile du Québec believes that this structure reflects how highly dangerous distracted driving behavior is and aims to reduce the number of repeat offenses. However, across the different jurisdic- tions there was some question as to the effectiveness of an incremental fine structure. In Maine, Maryland, and Connecticut, there may be cases in which the system does not work as intended. Specifically, a driver may be issued a second citation soon after the first citation and both will be issued as a first citation due to delays in processing citation paperwork. In Maine, an upcoming update to a fully integrated computerized e-citation system will assist in preventing this type of lag between a first and second citation.

20 Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications It is interesting to note that none of the jurisdictions that participated in the discussions were able to point to any evaluation of the impact of an incremental fine or penalty structure. In Manitoba, an amendment to the Highway Act in 2018 allows for police officers to issue a roadside suspension of a driver’s license if they observe someone driving with a handheld device. The roadside suspension is 3 days for a first occurrence and 7 days for subsequent occurrences. The goal is to employ an immediate deterrent for the distracted driving behavior, prevent post- conviction reversals, and protect other Manitobans from injury by distracted driving. There is no appeal or review; however, in order to ensure safety of the driver, a temporary permit may be issued to allow for a single drive to another location, and the suspension starts 24 to 36 hours following the citation. This type of roadside suspension is similar to that used for street racing in this jurisdiction. A number of jurisdictions have more punitive measures in cases where a crash involving a driver distracted by a cell phone results in death or injury. For example: • Maryland introduced “Jake’s Law” under which a driver who causes serious injury or death while talking on a handheld cell phone or texting may receive a prison sentence of up to 3 years and a fine of up to $5,000. The circumstances that led to this legislation assisted in publicizing the dangers of distracted driving, via earned media and social networks. • Under 2018 legislation in Ontario, careless drivers (including those who are distracted by handheld or hands-free devices) who cause death may be fined $2,000 to $50,000 and six demerit points, receive a license suspension of up to 5 years, and receive up to 2 years jail time. • Pennsylvania introduced “Daniel’s Law,” which enhances the penalties for a crash caused by texting while driving resulting in serious bodily injury or death. Under the law, drivers who text and cause a fatal injury may receive a 5-year jail sentence; drivers who cause bodily injury while texting and driving may receive a 2-year jail sentence. • In Connecticut, misconduct or manslaughter can be charged in the case of a fatal crash caused during the conduct of an infraction. Enforcement Strategies Law enforcement has a central role in the prevention of distracted driving. Several juris- dictions mentioned the importance of including law enforcement when developing the law language and content; otherwise, the proposed law might introduce enforcement challenges. Following the introduction of a new or revised distracted driving law, the language of the law is disseminated to law enforcement. In most jurisdictions, this is accomplished through memoranda to officers and updates to the penal code books. In Alberta, a joint committee was created and a presentation was conducted with law enforcement agencies. In Idaho, training is provided to law enforcement on documenting distracted driving and cell phone use in crash reports. During these discussions, the researchers found that enforcement of distracted driving laws varied. Jurisdictions with primary laws preventing handheld use of electronic devices conducted electronic device enforcement as part of their normal traffic safety routine. Con- versely, in jurisdictions with secondary or texting laws, enforcement appeared to be less of a priority. Many jurisdictions conducted higher rates of distracted driving enforcement during enhanced enforcement periods or high-visibility periods. In the United States, this often occurs in April, during the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT’s) National Dis- tracted Driving Awareness Month. Canadian provinces often opt for enhanced enforcement periods as well. In Manitoba, there are enhanced distracted driving enforcement periods during 3 separate months of the year, and funding is included for the Royal Canadian Mountain Police as well as local law enforcement agencies.

Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies 21 In some jurisdictions, enforcement is data driven and primarily occurs in areas with high rates of distracted driving crashes. For example, Maryland extended enhanced distracted driv- ing enforcement in the southern counties by adding sustained enforcement and overtime hours for a 6-month period, starting in April (National Distracted Driving Awareness Month) and continuing through September. Enforcement strategies identified by jurisdictions include: • Focused Patrols. Connecticut set up focused patrol zones manned by multiple officers, includ- ing a spotter, an officer to pull over the vehicles, and others to write citations (see Figure 4). • Use of Elevated Vehicles. Pickup trucks, commercial trucks, utility vehicles, and buses have been used by enforcement agencies to spot distracted drivers in several jurisdictions, includ- ing Tennessee, Maine, Manitoba, and Quebec. In Tennessee, the use of elevated vehicles is titled Operation Incognito, and the Tennessee Highway Safety Office and Highway Patrol invite media and community partners to board a bus and assist as spotters (see Figure 5). The spotters notify police in patrol cars when they see distracted drivers. • Use of Video or Photography. In Idaho, elevated vehicles were used, and the drivers were videotaped to ensure that there was evidence of texting behavior. The use of video or photo- graphs may serve as a strategy in cases of laws with problematic language for enforcement. • Roving Patrols. In Maine, state police have used two-officer details in unmarked vans and SUVs—one officer to drive and the other to survey nearby cars. • Covert Tactics. Vermont has used undercover flaggers in work zones, as well as a spotter on a hill peering into vehicles using binoculars. In Maryland, law enforcement in Montgomery and Frederick counties dressed as panhandlers, carried signs (with the text “Are you using your cell phone?”), and radioed in to another officer who would pull distracted drivers over Source: Highway Safety Office, Connecticut Department of Transportation. Figure 4. Connecticut distracted driving focused enforcement zone.

22 Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications and issue citations. In Pennsylvania, work vehicles from the Pennsylvania Turnpike and PennDOT have been used to camouflage police and allow for observation of distracted driving violations. One unique campaign that was discussed is a joint effort by the six New England states of Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont. “Just Drive New England” is a coordinated distracted driving education and enforcement campaign run during April and is part of National Distracted Driving Awareness Month (see Figure 6). This partnership was developed in 2018 and addresses drivers in New England, who travel between states in the region at a relatively high frequency. The goal is to reach drivers through a coordinated campaign that includes enforcement and highway signage to remind them to stay focused and engaged while driving. Public Awareness and Information In many jurisdictions, following the initial enactment or revision of the distracted driving law, a strong public awareness campaign was designed. Examples include the following: • Maryland developed a campaign called “Park the Phone Before You Drive” related to its hand- held cell phone law. The campaign materials were distributed via Maryland’s traffic safety partners. Outreach also included the law enforcement community regarding enforcement. • Connecticut adapted the NHTSA “U Drive. U Text. U Pay.” campaign. Press events and ride- alongs were conducted with police to gain publicity about the distracted driving law through Source: Tennessee Highway Safety Office newsroom. Figure 5. Tennessee operation incognito invitation.

Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies 23 earned media. The slogan was also used in radio spots and at movie theaters, concerts, and events. For the period following the enactment of the law, citation holders with information about the law and the dangers of distracted driving were distributed, along with the citation, to anyone in violation. The slogan continues to be used during distracted driving focus peri- ods in April and August each year. • Because studies showed that the number of people found guilty of distracted driving–related offenses had been rising since 2008, Quebec began employing multifaceted public service campaigns annually in 2011. The campaigns include television commercials, online messages, social media campaigns, radio and Spotify ads, window decals, and a mobile app that restricts incoming messages and calls. Campaign slogans are updated annually to ensure that the mes- saging is novel in the public’s mind and to prevent the impact from dissipating. As with enforcement activities, in many jurisdictions, public outreach and education efforts are limited to National Distracted Driving Awareness Month. This is when most public aware- ness campaigns focus on the topic, particularly through paid media. Some of the distracted driving campaigns are discussed in the following: • In Alberta each year, February is designated for distracted driving prevention. One of the more prominent campaign slogans Alberta has used was in 2013 and was titled “Crotches Kill.” The campaign targeted drivers who texted while driving and included billboards, radio, social media, online display ads, and a website (see Figure 7). • Manitoba developed a social marketing campaign, “Save the 100,” referring to the approximately 100 traffic fatalities that occur each year in the province. The campaign focuses on traffic safety culture by showing the public that high-risk behaviors cause injuries. The campaign targets distracted driving, impaired driving, and speeding. It includes a television spot that depicts a child being hit by a distracted driver who is on the phone, and it entreats Manitobans to protect members of their community. • Based on findings from focus groups with the public after distracted driving became the lead- ing cause of crashes in 2014, Ontario developed a campaign titled “Put Down the Phone. It Happens Fast.” The television advertisement developed for the campaign depicted a young man struck by a vehicle after a driver looked at a phone for just a few seconds. It was heavily publicized and won a platinum award for most hits on Google. A knowledge, aptitudes, and Source: Massachusetts Executive Office of Public Safety and Security and Maine Highway Safety 2018. Figure 6. Just Drive New England campaign.

24 Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications behavior (KAB) survey conducted before and after the campaign found that after the ads were viewed by the general public, awareness of the dangers of distracted driving increased significantly. • The Tennessee Highway Safety Office promoted a campaign called “Thumbs Down to Texting & Driving.” This campaign spread awareness by encouraging the public to post photos of two thumbs down with the #ThumbsDownTN hashtag on social media throughout the month of April. In many of the jurisdictions, social media, public events, and programs in schools with young drivers are important methods for increasing awareness of distracted driving. Connecticut works with Kramer International to bring the educational program “Save a Life Tour” to high schools across the state to discuss the dangers of mobile phone use and distracted driving. The program began in approximately 30 schools in the first year, and now reaches 80 schools annually. The Idaho Office of Highway Safety has designed a distracted driving prevention program for schools titled “Put It Down.” The program is designed for various school representatives, including administration, faculty, student government, and student club members. Schools that complete all of the required activities, including pre- and post-distracted driving sur- veys, distracted driving awareness activities, a report, and program evaluation activities, receive materials and giveaways, and their program is publicized on the Idaho Highway Safety Office website. Manitoba Public Insurance uses a distraction virtual reality simulator called “DRIVR-X: Choose Your Reality” in high schools and at community events to educate students on the dangers of distracted driving. The simulator is housed in a kiosk and allows teenagers to choose different distraction options, including answering the phone. The simulator then shows the impact of their choices and distracted driving. DRIVR-X is now in development for commer- cial drivers. Source: Alberta Office of Traffic Safety 2013. Figure 7. Alberta’s award-winning “Crotches Kill” campaign.

Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies 25 In New Mexico, driver education is a mandatory subject in high schools. This offers an excel- lent opportunity to emphasize the dangers of distracted driving and educate students on the law prohibiting any cell phone use for teenaged drivers. Through a grant from State Farm, “Drive Smart Virginia” uses a distracted driving simulator (see Figure 8) that is taken to different high schools throughout the state to educate students on the dangers of distracted driving. Facilitators conduct pre- and post-survey assessments with students, and survey results indicate that more than 90% of students report a behavioral change with respect to distracted driving and willingness to engage in different behaviors that are deemed distracting. Several jurisdictions also emphasize partnerships to promote awareness of distracted driving. The Vermont State Police partners with the Associated General Contractors of Vermont, the Vermont Youth Safety Council, and the Vermont Highway Safety Alliance to promote safe driving habits related to handheld electronic devices. Many outreach and community events are held throughout the year. The Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators established the Canadian Dis- tracted Driving Task Force, which has representatives from all Canadian provinces. The task force aims to reduce distracted driving as a contributing factor to motor vehicle collision fatalities and serious injuries in Canada. The task force conducted a joint study of distracted driving laws, enforcement, and public awareness strategies in Canada and worldwide, which is summarized in the Distracted Driving White Paper (Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators 2018). “Drive Smart Virginia” leads many efforts to prevent distracted driving, including promot- ing changes to legislation and promoting public awareness. Since 2013, the program has held an annual Distracted Driving Summit that focuses on how to tackle distracted driving through advocacy, enforcement, corporate policies, education, and research. Several representatives acknowledged the challenge of maintaining substantial campaigns year-round. Efforts were often focused after an initial legislative campaign, after a law was enacted or revised, or during National Distracted Driving Awareness Month. The exceptions in the United States are states with NHTSA 405E grants that are in a more advantageous position to fund activities year-round. Source: Drive Smart Virginia. Figure 8. A student using the Drive Smart Virginia simulator.

26 Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications The researchers were not able to easily identify educational and outreach materials related to distracted driving for some of the jurisdictions. Based on reviews of state highway plans and highway safety websites, it seems that distracted driving may not be a top traffic safety priority in some jurisdictions. For example, at the time of this review, on the West Virginia Governors Highway Safety Program page (West Virginia Division of Motor Vehicles – Highway Safety, n.d.), which is a part of the state division of motor vehicles, distracted driving was not listed as one of the state’s emphasized programs. Similarly, although the South Dakota Highway Safety Office homepage focuses on a number of traffic safety topics, at the time of this review, distracted driving was not listed as part of the key efforts. While there may be limitations in funding for the time and resources that can be devoted to distracted driving awareness in some jurisdictions, several jurisdictions make use of informa- tion developed by other government agencies or traffic safety advocates. For example, Louisiana was part of the national “Put It Down” campaign through NHTSA, which is now being called “U Drive. U Text. U Pay.” On its Office of Highway Safety website, it provides some information on distracted driving but also includes hyperlinks to information created by NHTSA. Data Collection and Evaluation Most jurisdictions attempt to collect and disseminate data on distracted driving crashes, and several jurisdictions indicated that enforcement programs were data driven. Use of cell phones or texting was specifically noted in crash forms under distracted driving or inattentive driving in many of the jurisdictions (e.g., Idaho, Maine, Nebraska, Ontario, Oregon, South Carolina, and Virginia); however, some jurisdictions (e.g., Kentucky, New Mexico, and South Dakota) use a distracted driving field that is inclusive of all types of distractions. Virginia develops a report on fatalities (including those resulting from distracted driving) and disseminates it to key stakeholders on a weekly basis. In addition, Virginia law enforcement officers have access to an online crash reporting system that includes queries on distracted driving. As noted earlier, due to the difficulty in establishing cell phone use in the aftermath of a crash, reporting on distracted driving crashes may not accurately represent the use of elec- tronic devices. In Maryland, crash reports define and capture distraction violations as driver- contributing circumstances in crashes and identify such factors as cell phone use or, more generally, the driver’s “failure to pay full-time attention.” Because cell phone use is difficult to validate at the scene of a crash, the latter code is more commonly used in reports. Citation data on distracted driving are collected in many jurisdictions and used to plan enforcement and outreach activities. Several jurisdictions, including Alberta, Maine, Maryland, New Mexico, Oregon, and Vermont, disseminate annual data on citations online. However, other jurisdictions do not have the capacity to track citations because some law enforcement agencies have not yet moved to electronic data systems. In Virginia, several law enforcement agencies still use paper citations. Eventually the citations are entered into an electronic database, but the delay means that access to distracted driving citations cannot always be made in a timely manner. Several jurisdictions use public knowledge, attitudes, and motorists’ behaviors to support highway safety activities, legislation, and enforcement. In many cases, survey data point to a high level of awareness of the dangers of distracted driving. For example, in December 2017, a survey of Ontarians revealed that an overwhelming majority (90%) felt it was dangerous to send/read a text message or use a handheld device while driving, and perceptions of these dangers have increased since 2015 (85%). In Nebraska, a majority of respondents (61%) to the Annual Traffic Safety Study in 2018 supported a law allowing a ticket solely for cell phone use while driving, and most respondents (92%) supported a law allowing drivers to be stopped and ticketed solely for texting while

Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies 27 driving (Nebraska Annual Traffic Safety Study 2018). These findings may support transition to a primary law. In Vermont, the annual Governor’s Highway Safety Program KAB survey indicated that 98% of respondents were aware of the law banning handheld electronic device use while operating a vehicle; 55% of respondents said they never used an electronic communication device while driving (Vermont Agency of Transportation 2018). The focus of a digital town hall survey administered by the Virginia Governor’s office was on distracted driving (N = 2,084) (Virginia DMV and Virginia Tech 2018). Overall, findings pointed to a negative perception of distracted driving by commonwealth citizens. Respondents were asked for three words to describe the act of driving distracted; the word “dangerous” was mentioned most frequently (see Figure 9). In response to the question “Who might be the most influential person in getting you to put away your phone before driving?,” the most common responses were related to family (see Figure 10). Manitoba Public Insurance uses annual KAB surveys with the public to measure recall of road safety campaign messages and changes in reported driving behavior. These surveys are conducted before and after campaigns, with surveys at 2- and 6-month intervals following the campaign. Quebec also conducts KAB surveys and press review analysis following public awareness campaigns. While only a few jurisdictions indicate that they conduct quantitative evaluations on their public outreach and education programs, several do monitor social media and conduct analysis on these data. Ontario addressed the need for evaluating the effectiveness of updated legislation on dis- tracted driving behavior and crashes. However, this analysis can only be conducted 3 to 5 years after initiation or updates to the law. The anticipated timeframe for the next evaluation will be between 2021 and 2023. Another useful evaluation tool is observational data of electronic device use. In addition to the NOPUS estimates collected annually, a few states collect electronic device use data, some during their annual state seat-belt surveys. In Connecticut, observational surveys of distracted driving are conducted regularly. In 2018, Maine conducted a statewide observational survey Source: Virginia DMV and Virginia Tech 2018. Figure 9. Three words used to describe the act of driving distracted, #YourSayVA digital town hall distracted driver survey.

28 Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications of distracted driving (Chaudhary and Raboin 2018). With respect to the Canadian provinces, Manitoba conducts annual observational surveys of cell phone use along with other driver behaviors. Quebec conducted a field study in 2017 to observe distracted drivers and identify the sources of distraction. Effects of Safety and Political Culture Representatives from jurisdictions discussed the impact of the safety and political culture on distracted driving. In many jurisdictions, there has been a change in the public perception of distracted driving. While the use of cell phones has not necessarily dropped, tolerance for distracted driving is low. Representatives in Ontario indicated that the public accepts the Highway Safety Act and views it as a part of the driving obligation and responsibility of road users. Members of the public have sent correspondence that points to a low tolerance for distracted driving and a desire for increased enforcement and penalties. In Connecticut, it has become common for drivers who receive citations to admit that they should have remembered to put down the phone. Awareness of the enhanced enforcement period has also increased. Residents of Manitoba exhibited a high level of concern for distracted driving and the safety risk to the public. While citizens accepted the severity of the measures taken, some wrote to the Minister of Infrastructure to request an explanation of the updated legislation. Manitoba high- way safety professionals worried that distracted driving behavior is addictive; therefore, stricter laws may not have the desired impact. While members of the public understood the danger, they struggled to quell the desire to engage with their phones while driving. In Alberta, representatives felt that their safety culture might be less developed than in some of the neighboring provinces, despite recent improvements. Their approach is still more reactive than proactive, which is why revisions to policy often occur closely following a tragic event. Source: Virginia DMV and Virginia Tech 2018. Figure 10. Person who could influence stopping phone use while driving, #YourSayVA digital town hall distracted driver survey.

Examine Current Electronic Device Legislation and Strategies 29 During the discussions with state representatives, the researchers heard that the public was less inclined to support government oversight. However, some of these representatives mentioned that their jurisdictions were family oriented, so appeals to youth and the safety of the community were more likely to be supported. In situations such as these, customized and targeted messages might be the best approach. There are some jurisdictions where the safety culture may not allow for transition to a more rigorous law at this time. For example, according to state representatives in Nebraska, the public was not inclined to accept government efforts to eliminate their ability to use a handheld cell phone while driving; therefore, a hands-free law is not in its strategic plan. In this situation, perhaps gradual changes to the law and behaviors covered may prove more effective. As anticipated, similarities were identified across the cluster analysis groupings of the dis- tracted driving laws, enforcement strategies, public awareness and information, and the safety and political cultures. Specifically, jurisdictions with weaker laws were more likely to have chal- lenges in initiating more rigorous laws and conducting enforcement and public information campaigns. In contrast, jurisdictions with stronger laws were more likely to have successfully passed rigorous distracted driving laws and updates, improved the language of their laws to minimize opportunities for exemptions, and employed increased law enforcement and public awareness efforts. The stronger law clusters often pointed to a stronger safety and political culture that enabled more effective actions to prevent distracted driving.

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Distracted driving is a complex and ever-increasing risk to public safety on roadways. Drivers’ use of electronic devices significantly diverts human attention resources away from the driving task. The enforcement community faces significant challenges as electronic device use has expanded beyond simply texting or talking. Legislation regulating electronic device use while driving is inconsistent in content and implementation.

The TRB Behavioral Traffic Safety Cooperative Research Program's BTSCRP Research Report 1: Using Electronic Devices While Driving: Legislation and Enforcement Implications presents the results of an examination of the current state and provincial legislation on electronic device use while driving; evaluates the benefits and impediments associated with enacting, enforcing, and adjudicating electronic device use; and proposes model legislation and educational materials that can be used by relevant stakeholders to enact a law and educate key individuals on the importance of the law.

Supplemental the report is a presentation for law enforcement.

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