Motorcycle riders will cheer loudly if police introduce radar that detects texting drivers – but don’t expect it to replace the ubiquitous speed camera cash cow.
A company in Virginia, USA, is working on a device that detects texting radio signals sent from a mobile phone which are different from the signals when akin a call. The only problem would be proving it was the driver who sent the text, rater than a passenger, although it would work in cars with no passengers.
However, governments and police departments are hardly likely to replace their speed cameras with these radar systems as more motorists speed than text. It’s not because we are all speed freaks, but because so any of us inadvertently drift over the speed limit. You can’t inadvertently text while driving!
It sounds fantastic to have radar that detects texting – I don’t know how many times Ive nearly been run off the road by a distracted driver. But I just can’t help being cynical that it will be adopted by police. It will be expensive and won’t yield near as much revenue as speed detection.
But as the company, ComSonics, develops this new radar technology for modern policing it is still a decade behind the times. We’ve been texting and driving for well over a decade and nothing has been done except occasional half-hearted police patrols.
Meanwhile, technology has scooted ahead and we have drivers using their mobiles not only to make calls, but also to access the web, read and send emails, and post on social media. Has anyone invented a radar that can detect that?
And what about modern in-car technology that diverts driver attention while they surf the net through their infotainment systems? And now that smart watches are hitting the shops there is the added distraction of drivers consulting their watches to access the web.
Meanwhile, police will continue to rely on speed cameras with ever-diminishing speed margin allowances to penalise motorists who are paying attention to the important road ahead rather than their speedometers. Something is horribly wrong!
Meanwhile, watch the ComSonics video showing the accuracy of radar guns.