Rockefeller and Lautenberg Introduce Comprehensive Distracted Driving Prevention Bill

Holds Key Hearing Today in Commerce Committee on Critical Safety Issue

October 28, 2009

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Senator John D. (Jay) Rockefeller IV, Chairman of the U.S. Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, and Senator Frank R. Lautenberg, Chairman of the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Surface Transportation and Merchant Marine Infrastructure, Safety, and Security, issued the following statement today after introducing comprehensive legislation (S. 1938) to address the nationwide problem of distracted driving in both passenger and commercial vehicles.

“Everyone knows the dangers on the road created by distracted drivers—they are a threat to all families and serious action must be taken,” said Chairman Rockefeller.  “Distracted drivers—people who make the choice to text or use their electronic devices instead of watching the road—put all our lives at risk and that is absolutely unacceptable to me.  Today, I am unveiling comprehensive legislation that will give states real incentives to act, reduce the number of preventable deaths and injuries, and keep Americans safe from destructive and irresponsible distracted drivers.”  

“It’s common sense and a proven fact that driving and texting at the same time is a dangerous combination.  Distracted drivers cause accidents, injuries and deaths,” stated Senator Lautenberg.  “Our legislation offers a comprehensive strategy to combat distracted driving, make our roads safer and save lives.”

The U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation will hold a hearing on: “Combating Distracted Driving: Managing Behavioral and Technological Risks” today at 2:30 p.m. in hearing room 253 of the Russell Senate Office Building.

Witnesses to include:

The Honorable Ray LaHood, Secretary, U.S. Department of Transportation

The Honorable Julius Genachowski, Chairman, Federal Communications Commission
 ***Please see a summary of the Distracted Driving Prevention Act of 2009 below.***