This is a really sore spot with me. The concept of interstates was to transport goods cross-country. Trains were fading. On my keychain AND my bumper an item says, "IF YOU HAVE IT, A TRUCKER BROUGHT IT!" I'm incensed by commercials where "I got thousands because "a big truck" hit me." Nobody ever considers most truck accidents are NOT caused by the truckers'cell phones, but by the fools who cut them off too close--hard to stop 80,000 lbs in a heartbeat--or don't understand their needs!
As for cell phones -- they are a necessity for truckers. They NEED contact with brokers, delivery areas, dispatchers, bosses, etc. Many do use cell phones, and they make mistakes w or w/o them. So do CAR/SUV drivers! Ex: I've avoided MANY dangerous accidents because of local drivers going 40 mph ON CELL PHONES in the outside lane. They forget speed is important in the outside lane, and cell phones are NOT safe. In reality, they are making a huge mistake, because attention to cell phones and not their speed, fouls up the access ramps and puts many drivers--ESPECIALLY TRUCKERS TRYING TO PULL INTO A TRUCK OR REST STOP! Going w/the flow I pulled off once so a trucker and another car could exit safely. Guy in front of me never even noticed he could have killed all of us!
I think anyone with a driver's license should have to ride at least one day in the passenger seat of a semi to see the scary other side! Not all truckers are great drivers; not all other drivers are bad; doctors/lawyers/etc. are ALL at risk of making mistakes in their career. So don't jump on the truckers. Half the time they've been forced into making a split-second decision by a car driver. I've made cross-country trips in a semi and in cars. Before we lambast truckers, let's require our teens to ride one day and and their parents who taught them how to drive, but not how "NOT to drive!"
I say it's 50/50, and I am sick of hearing about truckers and nothing about others maybe less informed OR TRAINED. Truckers have threatened to go on strike. If they ever do, your cell phone won't do you or anyone any good, because we won't have any fuel to go anywhere, and the grocery shelves will be empty!