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New US Rule Would Ban Texting for Hazmat Trucking

Tuesday, 21 Sep 2010 01:30 PM

 

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. government is seeking to prohibit truck drivers from sending text messages on their mobile phones while transporting hazardous materials, the Transportation Department announced on Tuesday.

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood has launched a crusade to end what he calls "distracted driving," which includes using cell phones while behind the wheel of a car. In 2009, 5,500 people died and half a million were injured in car crashes involving a distracted driver, according to his agency.

The department will propose a rule to prohibit commercial drivers from texting while transporting hazardous materials. The department is also restricting train operators from using cell phones and other electronic devices while on the job.

"We are taking action on a number of fronts to address the epidemic of distracted driving in America," LaHood said in a statement. (Reporting by Lisa Lambert; Editing by James Dalgleish)

© 2014 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

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