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August 1, 2013

UK govt mulls banning Google Glass for drivers

Google Glass users would be penalised under the 1988 Road Traffic Act.

By CBR Staff Writer

The Department for Transport could ban Google Glass for drivers, much ahead of its launch in the UK in 2014.

The department is apprehensive about the new product as it could distract drivers, according to Stuff magazine.

The magazine quoted a Department for Transport (DfT) spokesman saying that they were in discussion with the Police to ensure that individuals do not use this technology while driving.

"It is important that drivers give their full attention to the road when they are behind the wheel and do not behave in a way that stops them from observing what is happening on the road," said the spokesman.

"A range of offences and penalties already exist to tackle those drivers who do not pay proper attention to the road including careless driving which will become a fixed penalty offence later this year."

As per DfT’s statement, Google Glass users would be penalised under the 1988 Road Traffic Act.

DfT had banned the usage of hand-held mobile phone while driving in 2003.

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Similar concerns were voiced about this new gadget in the US, with bills in Delaware and West Virginia banning drivers from wearing computing devices behind the wheel.

Responding to the ban, a Google spokesperson said, "We are thinking very carefully about how we design Glass because new technology always raises new issues. Our Glass Explorer programme, currently only launched in the US, reaches people from all walks of life and will ensure that our users become active participants in shaping the future of this technology."

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