Nearly half of Americans favor ban on drivers using cell phones: poll

Summary:A recommended ban on all mobile devices while driving has sparked controversy, but many Americans actually support the idea, according to new research.

Last week, the National Transportation and Safety Board proposed a national ban on all cell phone usage by drivers. That means no texting or phone calls -- even with hands-free devices -- at all times while driving, except for in emergency situations.

The recommendation has sparked debate and controversy, but a new poll suggests that more Americans might be in favor of such a drastic measure than we would assume. Poll Position reports that Americans support the NTSB's recommendation by a 49 percent to 44 percent margin.

When results are broken down by age, those aged 65 and older most favor the suggested ban, with 60 percent supporting it and 33 percent opposed. However, most other age groups were nearly divided with close results in favor and opposition.

The only age group that had a majority in opposition of the ban were those between the ages of 30 to 44, with 50.2 percent who opposed. Yet 46.8 percent of 18 to 29-year-olds favored the ban while 41.4 percent opposed it. (Approximately 11.7 percent abstained.)

Opinions on the proposed safety measure also didn't vary much by political affiliation. Democrats supported the ban the most at 55 percent, followed by Republicans at 50 percent, and Independents at 48 percent.

The survey, conducted by telephone on December 15, is based on responses from 1,133 registered voters nationwide.

How do you feel about a nationwide ban on drivers using cell phones, even with hands-free devices?

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Topics: Mobility, Hardware, Telcos

About

Rachel King is a staff writer for CBS Interactive based in San Francisco, covering business and enterprise technology for ZDNet, CNET and SmartPlanet. She has previously worked for The Business Insider, FastCompany.com, CNN's San Francisco bureau and the U.S. Department of State. Rachel has also written for MainStreet.com, Irish Americ... Full Bio

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