Driving With A Handheld Device- BANNED!

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Fall in Ontario is soooo beautiful!

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This is definitely my favourite time of the year!

Dinner tonight was rather festive for both Fall and Halloween. Mervin made another appearance…

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Eric made a delicious Sweet + Sour Stir-fry for dinner. He knew I was super busy so he took the reins and made his specialty!

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It was delicious. Carrots, peppers, onion, zucchini, tomato, no salt added sweet and sour sauce, minced garlic, and pepper.

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He served it over top of the Red Lentil Soup. Most of the broth was gone, so it was basically a thick protein-base that paired well with veggies. This soup is so versatile! Almost like a little black dress!!!

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Dessert was my new Empower Glo Bar.

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Regarding the poll- there was a tie between Ignite and Invigorate. I did a tie breaker on Twitter and just as I was about to officially name it, I was hit with Empower for a name. It was a gut instinct and I knew I had to go with it!! I am definitely going to keep Ignite and Invigorate on the list though. If there is one thing I have learned in the past year, it is listen to the little voice! So, Empower it is.

Variety Pack Sale Tomorrow

Stay tuned tomorrow for the new release of Empower in a delicious new variety pack. I will be having a sale for the first 20 orders tomorrow!

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Cellphone ban now in effect for Ontario drivers!

Staring today it is now illegal for Ontario drivers to use cellphones, Blackberries, and other handheld devices while driving a car.

"Under the province-wide ban, drivers are forbidden from talking, texting or emailing on their portable phones while behind the wheel of their vehicle. The law, which came into affect today, is aimed at protecting drivers from distractions that take their eyes off the road for a long period of time.

The new law also forbids drivers from operating entertainment products such as portable DVD players and laptops.

However, iPods and GPS units are still permitted as long as they are mounted to a dashboard or "another accessible place in the vehicle," Ontario’s Ministry of Transportation states on its website.

Other exceptions to the rules are:

  • Drivers can use cell phones to dial 911 if they have an emergency
  • Phones can be used behind the wheel if the driver safely pulls off the road or is parked
  • Hands-free devices, such as headsets and phones plugged into the vehicle’s sound system, can also be used
  • Emergency workers like paramedics will be able to use hand-held phones for the next three years for work purposes"

[Source]

Personally, I am SO happy this is finally a law!!!! I have witnessed so many drivers almost get into an accident because they were either using a handheld cell phone or they were texting while driving. When I was commuting to Toronto I would see at least 5-10 drivers a day texting while driving. I think texting while driving is much more dangerous than talking on a cellphone.

Drivers caught talking on a handheld device or texting can face a fine up to $500 CAD. They aren’t messing around here!!

I need to check if my old Blackberry has a speaker phone…At first I was thinking: yikes, how am I going to talk in the car? But speaker phones and headsets make it so easy now! Plus, they don’t hurt the neck. ;) I think it will be a small sacrifice in comparison to the lives it will hopefully save.

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Do you support the ban of handheld devices while driving? Are they banned in YOUR city?

There are similar bans in the following areas: Quebec, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, California and New York, according to the Ontario government.

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"Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be cumbered with your old nonsense."
–– Ralph Waldo Emerson

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{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

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Eleanor J October 30, 2009

Although Kristilyn makes a good point about cell phone use not being the only potential distraction to drivers, recent studies have shown that texting while driving is especially dangerous.

Virginia recently implemented a ban on texting while driving, though there is no prohibition against using a handheld device to make phone calls. Washington, D.C. on the other hand bans all cell phone use (though you can still use iPods, etc).

It’s interesting to hear that Quebec has a similar ban in place. I went to McGill and had no idea – I had many a terrifying cab ride with a gabbing cabbie.

Now that there are laws reinforcing what we all already know, there are still questions over both enforcement and compliance. One solution for drivers trying to obey the new law is technology. ZoomSafer is software that suppresses incoming calls, texts, and emails, and sends an auto-reply letting people know that you’re focused on the road. It also works with voice-dialing capabilities to allow for hands-free use, which is allowed for in the law. You can download ZoomSafer for free at http://www.zoomsafer.com.

As previous commenters noted, we need more than just legislation if we’re going to improve road safety. Education is key – the more people recognize the dangers of distracted driving, the more people will make smarter choices when they’re behind the wheel.

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Kristilyn (singer-songwriter) October 29, 2009

Alberta doesn’t have this ban (yet), but Strathcona County, near central Alberta has it. I get what they’re trying to do, but I think there are so many other distractions. I know I’ve talked on my cell phone before while driving and try to still be a good driver in the process, but what about other passengers? music? kids? dogs? food? people who shave while driving? changing a CD? changing the station on the radio? reading a map? searching in your purse for something? dropping something on the floor and reaching to pick it up?

Really, there are so many other things that can go on inside a vehicle that can be distracting and can cause an accident that I don’t think cell phones are the worst of it.

Just my opinion.

K

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on the rocks October 27, 2009

cellphone use withoutheadsets are illegal in CA…i think its a good idea, we have some crazy drivers here!

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Lily October 27, 2009

Texting while driving is especially dangerous, it has even been found that DRUNK DRIVING is less hazardous in some situations!

http://jalopnik.com/5302414/drunk-driving-safer-than-texting-while-driving

Even if you consider yourself an expert texter and/or driver you should focus on the road and not distract yourself. You endanger everyone around you when you make that choice.

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Carolyn October 27, 2009

There’s no texting while driving where I live but you can still talk on your phone. P.S. I’m giving away a breast cancer awareness Ipod Nano armband case on my blog: http://lovinlosing.com/

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PassTheWheel - G1 test October 27, 2009

I also agree. This law is very much needed. Day 2 of the new law and it appears as though traffic is a bit better on my route to the office.

Through drivers education, we hope that new drivers will take this new law seriously. As for current drivers – old habits die hard – but hopefully they will adjust.

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Jenn October 27, 2009

I think this law is much needed. It drives me absolutely BONKERS when I notice somebody driving poorly or erratically only to pull up beside them and see that they are gabbing on the phone or texting. Grrrrr.

I know it’s going to take adjustment and is an inconvenience but I think the safety benefits are immeasurable.

I’m in Ontario too and our office issued Bluetooth earpieces to everyone so we can be law abiding employees while travelling.

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AGS October 27, 2009

I am somewhat ambivalent about it. The main reason is that I believe laws should be enforcable and enforced. As Mohina pointed out above, plenty of people still text (my husband — despite my pleading to stop!!) and talk on the phone while driving despite bans in their area.

It’s pretty much a no-brainer that it’s distracting and cuts down on reaction time, so the ban makes sense. I just don’t know what the impact of that kind of a ban will be. I think there needs to be a lot of public safety warnings put out via internet and TV (just like we have for drunk driving and child car seats) if we actually want to see this behavior decrease.

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mohina October 27, 2009

in England, there has been a ban for quite sometime, although i see people on a regular basis texting or talking on their mobiles…i hate seeing this. what makes me really mad is people including a few on the comments page, who know that it is wrong etc but still do it, using time spent commuting as an EXCUSE. you managed to conduct your lives before being so dependent on phones. why can you not adapt now? what makes YOUR phonecall, text message MORE IMPORTANT than your fellow citizens safety on the roads?
surely everyone deserves the right to be treated equally!

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Jen October 27, 2009

I am from the Edmonton area and it has been banned for quite a while here. The fines are also hefty. Personally I like the law that they recently passed here. Hands free is so much easier and comfortable to use while driving anyways, and it doesn’t take much effort. I don’t know how many times my cell phone has rang when I was on the freeway, and I just ignored it…its not worth it.

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Shannon October 27, 2009

I completely support a ban on hand-held devises. We survived for years without being able to communicate while driving. I think we can survive! Besides, speaker phones and headsets are not hard to come by if a person really and truly has to make a call.

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Paige @ Running Around Normal October 27, 2009

Oooh, empower! I love it.

I’m all for the ban. I’m pretty sure Illinois is enforcing the no-texting-while-driving law come January 1. It’s so dangerous!

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emily - eatventures October 27, 2009

I totally support this law. I have a healthy fear of cars and wish that more people respected the fact that while very convenient, they are also very dangerous. The cell phone law has actually been in effect back home (St. Thomas, Virgin Islands) for almost 2 years.

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Runningwriter October 27, 2009

Wow, it’s weird to think this isn’t law everywhere. It’s been in effect in Australia for years and also in the UK. I think it’s a good thing. Although in the UK people have also been fined for drinking water and eating at the wheel!

ps I couldn’t eat with Mervin watching me :)

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Emily October 27, 2009

Fall in Ontario is beautiful – your photos are stunning.
Here in London, UK, there is a ban. From memory it’s been in force at least 4-5 years now. I did once see a guy with a mini TV showing the football stuck on his dashboard, and I hope he got caught for that too!

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Emmanuelle October 27, 2009

We also have a ban in Belgium and France, and I think it is a good thing too, it’s way too dangerous!

Nice dinner by the way, yummy :-p

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Leah @ Simply fabulous October 27, 2009

It’s been illegal here ever since I moved here and had been for a while before that. I think it’s a GREAT idea personally. People here are VERY against using cell phones while driving.

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Oxidaisy October 27, 2009

I live in the Netherlands and we have had that law for several years now! The Belgian discussion about forbidding blue tooth etc is going on here too. I also think it is ridiculous, because then you should not talk at all anymore while driving. The point is that people still need to dial the number etc to make a call, and I think that is more dangerous than the actual conversation itself.
I have a headset that i can plug into my phone. I only use it if I expect a call, or expect to make a call. If needed I plug it in at a traffic light and I have it set on auto-answer so no need to press any buttons. If I don’t have the headset with me I simpy don’t answer. sometimes I am just not available.

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Nicole October 27, 2009

Oh yes!! They are very serious about driving with cell phones here in Germany. The military bases are even more harsh. They will get you even if you try to be sneaky about it!! I completely agree with the law though. I have seen too many people get into accidents from texting! Scary!

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