Automakers urged to limit in-motion Internet use

| Wednesday, April 24, 2013, 12:01 a.m.

Regulators today issued guidelines for automakers intended to limit distractions from the use of Twitter Inc. and Facebook Inc. through in-vehicle infotainment systems.

The Transportation Department asked automakers to bar the use of social media sites and Internet browsing when a vehicle is moving. Automakers are also urged to design navigation and other screen-based systems so that drivers don't need to take their eyes off the road for more than two seconds to select an option, or for a total of 12 seconds to complete an entire task such as entering an address.

“We've already made good progress in getting cellphones out of peoples' hands when they're behind the wheel,” Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said Tuesday. “Cellphones aren't the only distractions.”

A study released Tuesday, funded with a Transportation Department grant, found that hands-free texting distracted drivers just as much as messaging with a device in one's hands.

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