Niagara Gazette

Features

July 4, 2013

From the 'America's Car Show' newsroom

Niagara Gazette — Editor’s Note: The Gazette has partnered with local automotive expert Tom Torbjornsen to publish his weekly national column. Tom’s Corner will appear in Thursday’s editions. 

More research confirms the danger of talking oncell phone while driving

The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety just conducted a new distracted-driving study, again confirming the presence and crash risk of cognitive distraction. The human brain is incapable of performing at the same time the tasks necessary to safely operate a motor vehicle while engaged in other cognitively demanding tasks such as a phone conversation or speech to text.

The NHTSA has observed 10 percent of all drivers at any given moment, are distracted by a cell phone. When this level of exposure to risk is combined with the degree of risk as defined in the AAA Foundation study, it is easy to understand why cell phone distracted driving has become a public health epidemic, poised to only get worse. If you see a person on a cell phone while driving, get away from them.

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Oh the price of parking these days!

In the ridiculous category: Lisa Blumenthal a Boston resident recently plunked down $560,000 at auction to purchase two parking spots within the city limits. The spots were up for auction because the IRS seized them from a man who owed back taxes. The former owner of the tandem spots paid $50,000 for them in 1993.

Bidding for the spots started at a relatively reasonable $42,000, but quickly shot up to $200,000. Just two bidders remained once the asking price crossed the $500,000 mark, with Blumenthal outlasting her only competitor. “I really wanted them, but there was a limit,” the losing bidder told The Boston Globe. Just four years ago a single parking space in the same neighborhood set a new record when it sold for $300,000.

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Ford recall

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