New York Designates 'Texting Zones' on Highways

New York officials believe they're the first to use signs to encourage drivers to use cellphones in safe, designated places like rest stops.
by | September 24, 2013
New York is using highway signs to highlight park-and-ride facilities, rest stops and other areas along the state's roads as places where drivers can safely use their cellphones.
New York is using highway signs to highlight park-and-ride facilities, rest stops and other areas along the state's roads as places where drivers can safely use their cellphones. FlickrCC/New York State Executive Chamber

New York officials hope the designation of "texting zones" along state highways will encourage drivers to pull over if they want to use their cell phones while out on the road.

The plan, unveiled in a press event Monday, is to highlight park-and-ride facilities, rest stops and other parking areas along the state's highways as places where drivers can safely use their cell phones by dubbing them "texting zones."

Nearly 300 signs will point motorists towards 91 locations where they can use their phones. State officials say they believe they're the first to use signage to encourage cell phone use in designated places.

Nationwide, cell phone use in vehicles continues to be a challenge that traffic safety experts have sought to combat. In 2011, the most recent year for which data is available, 3,331 people died and another 387,000 were injured in distraction-affected crashes, according to the Governors Highway Safety Association.

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