All That's Trucking

Next on the Distracted-Driving Hit List: Google Glass?

April 5, 2013

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I'm wondering, has Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood seen this video showing how the new Google Glass product is supposed to work? Because I'm pretty sure he might have something to say about Google Glass and distracted driving. The West Virginia state legislature already has.

Google Glass, due for release later this year, is an electronics device that looks much like a pair of eyeglasses but operates much like a voice-activated smart phone. The computer display appears in the user’s right field of vision. Functions include voice-activated text messaging, video recording and live streaming, photo capturing, navigation, language translation and of course googling.

I have to admit, this sounds like the kind of thing I've always wished for -- something that could take photos or video of what I'm seeing. And the ability to search the web, do language translation and text message is like something out of the sci-fi novels I devoured as a kid. Really cool!

But, how distracting might it be, especially behind the wheel?

A legislator in West Virginia has introduced a bill that would address the question and prohibit driving a vehicle while using a wearable computer with a head-mounted display.

The legislation, introduced by Delegate Gary G. Howell, would update existing state law aimed at curbing distracted driving. (In West Virginia, driving while texting with a handheld cell phone is already a primary offense.)

Google Glass is supposed to be available later this year. They haven't officially announced a price, but publications that have spoken with Google employees are saying about the same as a smartphone. I don't see a lot of truckers among the first-wave adopters. But give it time. As with most technology, prices will eventually come down with wider use.

Although LaHood will likely be gone as head of the DOT by then, what he's started with distracted driving laws now has plenty of momentum on its own. So don't be surprised when you see a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking from the DOT looking to regulate the use of Google Glass by commercial truck drivers.

Want to know more about Google Glass? Here's a good recent article on a tech website:


  1. 1. rick sare [ April 26, 2014 @ 05:24PM ]

    as of right now and since Google glass first became available two explorers I have been the only truck driver in the in the United States and quite possibly I believe the world sense Google glasses only available in the United States I have been driving a little over 80,000 miles with them right now as a matter of fact I'm wearing them right now sending you this message while driving and speaking it's completely safe hands free nothing in my view I'm not messing with my phone my tablets my computer my call com it's incredible I don't even know how as a truck driver I ever drove without it just the GPS function alone is amazing so before they start regulating things like this they need to test them or why am I the only person out here testing them right now I don't understand it they watch the news and make haste for judgment before evening trying them out anyway as you can see speech to text isn't perfect but anyway just my thoughts


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Deborah Lockridge

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All That's Trucking blog is just that – the editor's take on anything and everything related to trucking, with the help of guest posts from other HDT editors. Author Deborah Lockridge's career as an award-winning trucking journalist started in 1990.


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