Police to position spies to stop drivers texting

Beware your local overpass. For, if you're in Connecticut or Massachusetts, it might now house a police spy trying to catch you texting and driving.

Is it worth it? nick1111341/YouTube Screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

I am not sure that texting drivers can ever be stopped.

They use sneaky methods. They try to keep the phone below dashboard level. Or they merely prop their cell phone on their steering wheel and multitask.

Texting is just too important, isn't it? You have dinners to plan, children's pickups to organize, and friends to constantly tell about your latest amorous pursuit.

And yet Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood is not giving up. He has dedicated $550,000 to a new method of spotting motorized texters, a method that governments have used since before John Le Carre began writing: yes, spies.

CNS News reports that Connecticut and Massachusetts are the first states to benefit from this money.

LaHood has a blog called FastLane, and he explained there: "It is more challenging for law enforcement officers to detect drivers texting behind the wheel than drivers talking on handheld devices."

Radical methods must be used, therefore. Yes, like "spotters on overpasses on elevated roadways."

I have no idea whether they will be wearing beige coats and trilbies to hide their identity.

There will also, apparently, be stationary and roving patrols, though quite how these patrols will differ from your normal "oh, look, there's a policeman" patrol is unclear.

In essence, technology makes humans uneducable. (Though one British PSA that I have embedded here really tried hard to present the realities.) Give them a toy and they will play with it, regardless of what daddy or mommy state might think.

They will risk their lives and those of others simply in order to text Pia and Dinna about an eligible accountant they met last night, just before they passed out from too much tequila.

Naturally, one wishes these new spying methods the greatest of fortune. However, as last night's presidential debate showed, humanity might just be beyond correction.

 

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