Federal employees will be prohibited from operating mobile devices while driving government vehicles or personal vehicles on government business under an Executive Order signed on Thursday by President Barack Obama.
Heads of Federal agencies will be required -- within three months -- to "take appropriate measures" towards implementing the ban, which is meant to reduce the risks posed by text-messaging and e-mail usage by drivers of moving vehicles. Federal contractors will be encouraged to "adopt and enforce" similar policies.
The order includes an exemption for "employees, devices or vehicles" used for protective purposes, law enforcement, or other public safety uses. First responders often receive emergency dispatch information using car-mounted laptop computers.