BC Medical Association

BC Medical Association

July 27, 2009 12:00 ET

BC Medical Association: British Columbians Support a Cell Phone Ban for Drivers

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - July 27, 2009) - The vast majority of British Columbians agree that cell phone use by drivers is a serious road safety issue and most support a total ban of cell phone use while driving.

In a poll conducted by Ipsos Reid on behalf of the BC Medical Association, 92% of British Columbians said they think cell phone use is a serious road safety issue and 62% categorized the issue as "very serious". Only 7% of those polled thought the problem was not serious.

The poll also showed 76% of British Columbians support a complete ban on all cell phone use by drivers. This includes 56% of people who would "strongly support" such a ban.

Support for the ban and the seriousness of the issue was consistent across regions and demographics.

"This poll shows that the provincial government's decision to look at the issue of cell phone use by drivers is timely and what the public wants," said Dr. Brian Brodie, President of the BC Medical Association.

The BCMA has long been on the record promoting a ban of cell phone use by drivers. Most recently it joined forces with the BCAA and the BC Association of Police Chiefs to call on the province to implement restrictions on cell phone and text messaging by drivers.

"The evidence clearly shows that driver distraction increases while using a cell phone or other communication's devices. Each of us sees near misses on our roads every day. The BCMA believes it is time BC adopts a ban on text messaging and cell phone use while driving," Dr. Brodie continued.

The BCMA is responding to the Solicitor General's call for submissions on this issue and adds its voice to the increasing number of vocal supporters that BC follow other provinces in bringing in legislation to deal with this important road safety issue.

The omnibus poll conducted by Ipsos Reid in July 2009 surveyed 800 adult British Columbians. The results are accurate within +/- 3.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

The BCMA submission is available on the BCMA website at www.bcma.org.

Contact Information

  • BC Medical Association
    Sharon Shore
    Senior Manager of Communications and Media Relations
    604-638-2832 or 604-306-1866