Using cell phone records as part of the investigation, NTSB found that the pickup truck driver had sent and received a total of 11 text messages in the minutes leading up to the accident. There is a current law in Missouri banning texting while driving for any driver under the age of twenty-one, a law the pickup driver clearly ignored. Missouri State Highway Patrol records reveal that only 120 citations have been handed out the past two years as a result of this law.
Although several states have adopted laws limiting or banning the use of cell phones by drivers, this is the first time a national safety board has recommended a nationwide ban. Opponents of this recommendation say it would be too hard to enforce and impedes on the rights of drivers. Proponents of the ban say safety of all people on the road should be the priority. It is unclear whether or not the federal government will take the NTSB recommendation to heart and try to issue a nationwide ban.
Regardless if a nationwide ban is enacted, or Missouri alone changes their laws regarding cell phone use while driving, many fellow students of the young woman who lost her life in the accident (some who survived the accident themselves) have already pledged not to use their cell phones while driving.
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