Category:  Politics

Transportation Department Takes on Navigation Apps

We all know that texting while driving is not only extremely dangerous, but also illegal in almost every state. But what happens when you are using a navigation app? What category does this distraction fall into, and should it be treated the same way as texting while driving? The New York Times delves deeper into the issue and the impact that the proposed transportation bill will have on the issue.

The Transportation Department seeks to tighten the grip on distracted driving. They are looking to take the authority from Congress and become the sole regulator of the use of navigation aids, including apps on smartphones that contribute to distracted driving. 

This measure that is included in proposed transportations bill would single out the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration as having the power to mandate any restrictions on navigation apps, as well make any changes if they later deem the apps to be dangerous. The Administrations power over the apps will be similar to their discretion and regulation of mechanical features in cars.

Many automobile makers, who usually follow all of the necessary guidelines put in place regarding built-in navigation systems, are supportive of this new measure; however, the bill has run into fervent opposition from technology companies.  The companies claim that the new laws are a result of federal regulators attempting to keep up with the ever-changing technology industry and that any laws regulating the use of navigation apps would be impossible to enforce and impractical.

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