Idaho already has a statewide ban on texting behind the wheel, but AAA of Idaho says that ban does little to protect teenage drivers. They have launched a new program to convince the state legislature to pass a complete on cell phone use by any drivers 18 and younger. They say they have public support for such a ban and that the evidence shows such a ban would likely save lives.

In Idaho, much as in the rest of the country, teenage drivers are at a much higher risk of being involved in a fatal vehicle collision. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, vehicle collisions remain the leading cause of death for teenagers in the United States.

So far, more than 40 states have some sort of ban on distracted driving. Some ban all use of handheld devices, while most simply ban texting and driving. What is being proposed in Idaho by AAA is similar to bans in other states which place more restrictions on young drivers than they do on more experienced drivers.

The idea here is not to make life difficult for young drivers, but to make defensive driving easier. Distracted driving means that the driver is doing something, anything, other than focusing all their attention on the skill of driving. Being distracted is going to increase a drivers risk of missing something important: a slowing vehicle, a child crossing the road, poor driving conditions. Any one of those things,or something completely unexpected, might be enough to cause a vehicle collision.

The Idaho state legislature has not yet responded to the proposal by the Idaho AAA but it seems certain, if public support for such a ban exists, they will have to do something.