Regulations May Be Coming to Mapping Apps

By: Garrett Wymer Email
By: Garrett Wymer Email

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STAUNTON, Va. (WHSV) -- It's illegal to text and drive, but police say using your phone as a GPS can be just as distracting.

A proposal in front of Congress could limit how you navigate while driving. A provision in President Obama's transportation proposal could mean changes for how you find your way while you're driving.

When it comes to Google Maps and other map apps on your smartphone, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration would be able to set regulations for the apps that app makers would have to comply with, all part of an effort to cut back on distractions, and help you get where you're going safely.

"If you're not going to get there safely, then it's just going to cause you more grief than if it takes you a few extra minutes," said Sgt. Brian Edwards with the Waynesboro Police Department. He said that distracted driving has become the biggest bad behavior for drivers.

He went on to say that you can be pulled over for typing an address into your map app while driving because after all, that can be just as distracting as texting.

"Just a few seconds being taken away, being distracted, people don't realize they're traveling almost several hundred feet during those few seconds," said Edwards.

The New York Times reports regulators are looking to make rules consistent for built-in GPS systems and apps you use on your phone.

Edwards said in the summer it's even more important to pay attention while driving because now that school is out, there will be more kids near streets.


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