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4/28 Driving? Then wait with the manicure - or the texting

Kentucky Country Day/Flickr

The Minnesota State Patrol's recent crackdown on distracted drivers turned up some doozys of excuses: "playing the game Last Frontier while driving. Said can't find time to play at work," "Cigarette in one hand, phone in the other. No hands on wheel," "steering w/knee doing long-hand math on piece of paper in MPLS on 35W. Also not buckled." (Read some more of the MSP's Twitter campaign here

Here at UMD, a PlayStation and a video game were transformed into a simulator to see how well drivers do driving and responding to texts.  Dr. Edward Downs, a professor in UMD’s Department of Communication, has studied the effects of distracted driving, so he was perhaps the only person not surprised by what the people who tried the simulator discovered.

Lisa Johnson started her broadcast career anchoring the television news at her high school and spinning country music at KWWK/KOLM Radio in Rochester, Minnesota. She was a reporter and news anchor at KTHI in Fargo, ND (not to mention the host of a children's program called "Lisa's Lane") and a radio reporter and anchor in Moorhead, Bismarck, Wahpeton and Fergus Falls.Since 1991, she has hosted Northland Morning on KUMD. One of the best parts of her job includes "paying it forward" by mentoring upcoming journalists and broadcasters on the student news team that helps produce Northland Morning. She also loves introducing the different people she meets in her job to one another, helping to forge new "community connections" and partnerships.Lisa has amassed a book collection weighing over two tons, and she enjoys reading, photography, volunteering with Animal Allies Humane Society and fantasizing about farmland. She goes to bed at 8pm, long before her daughter, two cats, or three dogs.