Senator Marcellino Passes Bill To Ban Watching Videos While Driving

Carl L Marcellino

April 13, 2005

State Senator Carl L. Marcellino (R-Syosset) recently announced Senate passage of his legislation (S.1310) which would ban the viewing of videos and dvds while driving an automobile.

"Today one of the more popular options when buying a car are dvd and vhs players. I understand that these can be great tools for a parent’s mental health while driving on a long trip. However, there have been incidences where the driver is viewing video while driving, which is a recipe for disaster. This bill will ultimately save lives by encouraging the driver to pay attention to the road conditions rather than what is playing on the video screen," said Senator Carl Marcellino.

Under Senator Marcellino’s legislation, certain systems that utilize video displays such as Global Positioning Systems or OnStar would be exempt from this bill. Also monitors used in the back seats of automobiles would not fall under this legislation. Only video screens within the view of the driver are impacted by this bill.

"It is well known that drivers are bombarded by distractions almost every time they get behind the wheel. A video screen is only one more opportunity to draw the attention of a driver from their primary task, which is driving. While it sounds like common sense not to watch movies while driving, people are still doing it. This unsafe practice needs to stop," continued Senator Marcellino.

"Multi-tasking is a reality in today’s world. All of us do it. However, unnecessary tasks such as watching videos or dvds while driving are just plain dangerous. This bill will make our streets and highways safer for everyone from our pedestrians to our fellow motorists," concluded Senator Marcellino.

The bill is carried in the Assembly by Assemblyman Clarence Norman.