A driver uses a cell phone, Tuesday, Sept. 8, 2009, in Freeport, Maine. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)

Perhaps pulling off the road would be a good idea? (Robert F. Bukaty/AP)

By Mark Memmott

Many, many people who have cars and cell phones have done it at least once: Read or sent a text message while driving.

Such "distracted driving" killed about 6,000 people last year, the Department of Transportation says.

Today, as NPR's Liz Halloran reports and as Morning Edition's Steve Inskeep previewed, the Department of Transportation tries to make distracted driving as much of a public issue as drunk driving has become.

The department hosts a "distracted driving summit" that it will webcast and live-blog here. Things get going at 9 a.m. ET.

We asked back in July about whether Two-Way readers use their cellphones while driving. Nearly 60% of the 1,192 who responded admitted they did.

Now, we wonder:

categories: National News

8:40 - September 30, 2009