Cellphones and business a lethal mix (editorial)

By John Hobel
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 08/10/2001

Was the last erratic driver you saw doing business on a cellphone? Could it have been an employee of yours? Driving and telephoning may be as lethal a mix as getting behind the wheel after consuming alcohol, and employers may find themselves held partially responsible when accidents occur.

The Wall Street Journal

recently reported on what is believed to be the first two such cases. In one incident, a San Francisco lawyer on business in Virginia, who regularly chalked up billable hours on the phone while driving, hit and killed a pedestrian while on a call. The victim’s family is suing the lawyer’s employer for (US) $30 million, claiming the firm pushes people to work long hours encouraging staff to use cellphones without setting safety guidelines.