WASHINGTON (CBS/AP) — Federal accident investigators recommended states ban the use of cell phones and other electronic devices by all drivers except in emergencies.
The National Transportation Safety Board’s recommendation followed a finding by the board that the initial collision in a deadly highway pileup in Missouri last year was caused by the inattention of a 19 year-old-pickup driver who sent or received 11 texts in the 11 minutes immediately before the accident.
The pickup driver and a 15-year-old student on one of the school buses were killed. Thirty-eight other people were injured.
The NTSB’s recommendation makes an exception for use of phones and other devices in emergency situations.
The board doesn’t have the power to impose regulations, but its recommendations carry significant weight with lawmakers.
Currently, Connecticut is the only New England state that bans handheld cell phone use.
Every New England state, including Massachusetts has enacted bans on texting while driving.
(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)