I never use my phone when driving. I keep it turned on but no ringtone, no vibration, completely silent. I've had a few people get mad and say, "Why didn't you answer?" and I would say, "I'm driving. I do not answer the phone when I'm driving."
They have told me to do the hands-free thing, but no. I don't and I won't.
The only exception to this rule was when my uncle passed and my aunt tried to call me. The phone vibrated, so I pulled over into a parking lot, stopped the car, and called her back. I was expecting this, but that's the safest thing to do.
Several years ago, I was hit in the back by a young girl on her cellphone. The damage wasn't bad but she jumped out of her car on the phone yelling to the caller, "I got hit!! I got hit!!"
I snatched her cellphone out of her hand, told the person, "She'll call you back." It was a flip phone, so I handed it back to her as I got my phone and called the highway patrol.
She accused me of stopping too suddenly in front of her....at a red light. She told me her dad was a lawyer and called him. He arrived at the same time the highway patrol did and he was livid. He told the HP officer I had no business stopping so suddenly in front of her. He demanded my information because "I'll sue the **** out of her."
The HP officer just looked at him and said, "Well, you'll need to tell the judge that. This was her fault and she was the one who hit Mrs.****** in the back. She was on her phone, not paying attention, and so I'm citing your daughter with failure to yield in a left turning lane, following too closely, on a cell phone as a minor of 17 years old (teens aren't allowed to be on phones back then) and I'm citing you for communicating a threat. Now you'd best be quiet and let me handle this."
Then the father threatened the HP officer saying, "I'll have your job. That woman stopped too suddenly and my daughter couldn't avoid hitting her. That woman needs to have her driver's license reviewed!"
The HP officer said very calmly, "Sir, you're more than welcome to my job. In the meantime, you will give me your insurance information and battle it out in court later, because your daughter's license may be revoked. Teens aren't allowed to use their cell phones in their cars. She has caused damage to the lady's car and you will have a court date."
Lawyer daddy said he could beat any court issue...but he didn't. We went to court, her license was taken away for one year and she had to do community service for 90 days and she had to pay something like $875. Plus, her daddy's insurance had to fix my car.
All this about just being responsible behind the wheel. Bleah. How hard is it?
Adopt a kitty and save nine lives.