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93 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
How does everyone feel about driving/riding while talking on the phone? In the riding community it seems that drivers talking on cell phones are looked down upon.

My personal experience differs quite a bit from what society/legislation targets as the problem (I have a Sena Bluetooth unit in my helmet). In my experience, driving OR riding while talking on the phone is dangerous. I don't find it any more distracting if I'm holding the phone up to my ear or not. If I'm thinking about what I'm saying on the call I become distracted (I often drive with one hand when I'm not turning anyhow). I have Bluetooth in my car and when I receive calls where I need to be attentive I am distracted.

Motorcyclists always complain about people talking on their phones, but I disagree that it's any more dangerous than using a Bluetooth headset. This obviously doesn't apply to texting, which is very dangerous and what the hands free law really aims at punishing, I hope, but I rarely ever hear of people get pulled over for it since they wouldn't be holding the phone high up when texting.

What your experience and opinions on the subject of distracted driving?

1,389 Posts
I don't know about anyone else, but I really struggle with multitasking... And can only focus on performing one task properly and thoroughly at a time.

When I'm driving a car, I can get away with a lot... Which can make me more laid back and less alert - and more prone to errors.

I enjoy riding, and one of the reasons is to get away from distractions, quite honestly.

212 Posts
The law in the UK:

Using mobile phones when driving: the law
It’s illegal to ride a motorcycle or drive using hand-held phones or similar devices.

The rules are the same if you’re stopped at traffic lights or queuing in traffic.

It’s also illegal to use a hand-held phone or similar device when supervising a learner driver or rider.
Penalties for using your phone while driving

You can get an automatic fixed penalty notice if you’re caught using a hand-held phone while driving or riding. You’ll get 3 penalty points on your licence and a fine of £100.
Your case could also go to court and you could be disqualified from driving or riding and get a maximum fine of £1,000. Drivers of buses or goods vehicles could get a maximum fine of £2,500.
New drivers

You’ll lose your licence if you get 6 or more penalty points within 2 years of passing your test.
When you can use a phone in your vehicle

If you’re the driver, you can only use your phone in a vehicle if you:

  • need to call 999 or 112 in an emergency and it’s unsafe or impractical to stop
  • are safely parked
Using hands-free devices when driving

You can use hands-free phones, sat navs and 2-way radios when you’re driving or riding. But if the police think you’re distracted and not in control of your vehicle you could still get stopped and penalised.

419 Posts
I have a Uclear for my helmet and only listen to music with it. My wife and I communicate with each other when we ride to get gas and such as well but that's it. If someone is calling and I'm riding I don't answer, motorcycle time is ME time. That is of course besides the fact that distracted driving is F'ing brutal these days and being a motorcycle riding hypocrite is about as bad as it gets.

And FYi a guy got caught here in Nanaimo going 100 down the highway using his cell phone to change songs. Got a distracted driving ticket but I wonder if the cop shouldn't have just killed the guy now and been done with it.

1,260 Posts
while there are relative levels of distraction
[obviously] - the fact remains - distraction
is and cannot be other than, distraction..

according to unfolding understandings on
distracted driving [now beyond both alcohol
and speeding as a cause of road smashes]
anything which is not actual driving/riding
or part of the driving/riding environment
is and must be a distraction from,
safe driving/riding..

and a cause of road smashes..

aside from drivers texting, checking emails
and social networks, taking photos on mobiles,
playing computer games, and other obvious
distractions,, even the act of adjusting volume
on a radio can be sufficient distraction from
the road ahead and whats happening in that
moment, to cause a road smash..
incl taking out a motorcyclist..

listening to music [for eg] is an input to brain
that brain can manage as a sort of passive
input,, and yet even music is or can be
a distraction [depends what you call music]..

there have been and no doubt are right now
drivers and riders out there with alcohol or drugs
in their systems, who have been driving or riding
'for years' that way, without crashing..
including those who cant stand up

these are examples of time lines crossing
sequences of events, or simply; it hasnt happened,

the hardened traffic officer or ambo paramedic
will hear drivers/others stating how they can
drive safely in this or that condition or
circumstance [family forum], and yet
will see such claims within their,
frame of reference, which is smashes
including horrible injuries and deaths,
due to - distracted driving -

if say, you had martial arts training to some
more or less effective level, and were attacked
by some nutcase with a knife,, how much
attention would you need to focus on
that reality, and would it be better
or otherwise to be distracted by
any, thought, idea or external thing
at that pivotal moment [?]

in zen and related systems there is a state
of mind 'mu-shin' or 'no mind' which means
without distracted thoughts in, your mind..
obviously the bulk of those driving or riding
on public roads cant be functioning within
zen like levels of focus and concentration
of mind to the task at hand,, and yet,
everyone is capable of some good level
of attention, focus and direction of mind
toward their task, including driving/riding..

imo riders must be more, focused
and less distracted, than drivers..
aside from obvious distracting behaviors,
riders must recognise their special
and vulnerable, situation and reality,
on the roads amid the full cross section
of society - out there, driving cars..

thats the short response..
all riding courses, including advanced,
include as basic prerequisies, attention
and focus on the skills being used
within specific road situations..

put simply, distraction kills..

1,498 Posts
I was almost hit head-on while driving in New Zealand, when the young woman in an oncoming car crossed onto my side of the road. She wasn't looking forwards, but head down, looking at her lap. No prizes for guessing what she was doing. She looked up at the very last moment and thankfully didn't swerve the wrong way, because by that time I had swerved onto her side of the road in order to miss her.

2,565 Posts
I do not own a cell phone...:)
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1,389 Posts
I do not own a cell phone...:)
I'm actually considering tossing mine out later in the future (especially when I'm retired), and rely on other means of communication at the time and freedom of choice. Feels like a burden that I tend to relentlessly carry along, honestly.
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