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Sitting on a park bench..
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Discussion Starter #1
Wonder if the movie was x-rated, a guy in NY got busted recently for indecency when motorists alongside noticed his choice of movies....it will be interesting to see the outcome.

http://www.gizmodo.com/archives/alaska-man-accused-of-watching-movie-during-fatal-wreck-018369.php

In a ground-breaking trial, Alaskan prosecutors have accused a driver who accidentally killed a couple in a car accident of watching a DVD on an in-dash player during the accident, something that is not technically illegal in Alaska, but possibly still convictable as manslaughter (I'm presuming). We've all done stupid things like operate electronics while driving, and while I'm not saying this guy shouldn't be prosecuted if proven negligent, there is an interesting precedent set (or maybe not set) here. Watching a movie while driving is irresponsible, but is it that much different than looking at a map on an in-car guidance system LCD screen while driving? Hard to say. How much distraction is too much distraction?
 

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Sotherner up north
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There is a great difference between a quick glance at a map scrren or the sterio and watching a movie whist driving - the former only takes your eyes off the road mominterilly, whilst the latter is likly to totally distract you.

In the UK its (quite rightly IMO) illegal for any screen playing a movie to be visable from the drivers seat.
 

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I don't think there's any chance that this case in Alaska will result in a 2nd degree murder charge for watching a DVD. You have to prove he was watching a DVD and that's nearly impossible if he says otherwise. Even if a DVD is in the head unit, there's no way to prove he was watching it at the time of the accident and you can't send someone to life in prison on a guess and a hunch.

That being said I think it will also bring a rash of laws that make it illegal to drive a car that has the ability to play DVDs while in motion. This will likely put an end to my interest in adding DVD playback on my NAV screen. BUMMER! I think I could drive and remain attentive to the road with video running but some moron who has trouble staying focused while talking on a cell phone is likely to be the one to crash with a DVD playing and ruin it for everyone else,

Couldn't it be argued that radio is enough of a distraction to cause an accident as well? If cell phones are banned nationally while driving, should we eventually expect a ban radios while driving?
 

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Sitting on a park bench..
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1,183 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Kurtster said:
I don't think there's any chance that this case in Alaska will result in a 2nd degree murder charge for watching a DVD. You have to prove he was watching a DVD and that's nearly impossible if he says otherwise. Even if a DVD is in the head unit, there's no way to prove he was watching it at the time of the accident and you can't send someone to life in prison on a guess and a hunch.

That being said I think it will also bring a rash of laws that make it illegal to drive a car that has the ability to play DVDs while in motion. This will likely put an end to my interest in adding DVD playback on my NAV screen. BUMMER! I think I could drive and remain attentive to the road with video running but some moron who has trouble staying focused while talking on a cell phone is likely to be the one to crash with a DVD playing and ruin it for everyone else,

Couldn't it be argued that radio is enough of a distraction to cause an accident as well? If cell phones are banned nationally while driving, should we eventually expect a ban radios while driving?
Yeah, I think the same studies on distractions while driving and talking on your mobile point to a higher degree of distraction(s) while eating and doing other things (I"ve seen people applying makeup, reading newspapers fully opened, and books) that are worse, all while going 75 mph.
 
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