Are drivers getting mixed messages about texting and driving?

Are drivers getting mixed messages about texting and driving?

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SALT LAKE CITY -- It is illegal in just under two-dozen states, including Utah, to text while driving. But that has not stopped agencies like the Utah Department of Transportation or the Utah Highway Patrol from sending out text messages via services like Twitter to update motorists on road or traffic conditions.

UDOT spokesman Adan Carillo says about 200 people follow UDOT on Twitter, and the Department of Public Safety site lists just over 300 followers.

People at both agencies say they try to be prudent about what kind of information they send out, but both value the technology.

"The law is the law, and we'll definitely enforce that," says Utah Highway Patrol Trooper Cameron Roden. "But we also trust in sending these out that people are going to obey the law and make sure that they send and receive message at appropriate times."

Roden points out there are many people who receive the updates who are not driving and the information the highway patrol is trying to get out to the public can be critical. At the same time, he says the agency may go back and look at possible liabilities involved.


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Marc Giauque


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