Texting while Driving
April 4, 2016
Written by Douglas Shaw
Texting While Driving. What will stop us?
Texting while driving is a topic that everyone needs to understand, that it is real and learn about the dangers associated with trying to combine driving a vehicle and operating a smartphone at the same time.
I would like to ask you to have an open mind and be ready for the cold hard truth about texting while driving.
In my other article I focused mainly on our teens more than all drivers, the reason for this is that texting while driving has been affecting our teens more than adults. I will say this though, texting while driving affects everyone.
It is not only against the law in many parts of the world, but can also turn a harmless drive into a life changing nightmare. Just think about this – you look away for a split second, and didn’t notice that the vehicle you were driving changed lanes into oncoming traffic. Yes, you might be lucky enough to look up in time to react to save yourself and others. But so many people are not that lucky.
- Texting and driving is dangerous.
- Texting and driving does kill, as it has far to many times.
Here are a few facts to look at:
These facts should help you see and understand that texting and driving – don’t mix.
Distracted driving is defined while doing something else that takes your attention away from the road. Distracted driving is divided into 3 different categories.
- Visual: something that takes a driver’s eyes off the road.
- Manual: something that takes a driver’s hands of the wheel.
- Cognitive: something that takes a driver’s mind off of driving.
80% of automobile accidents involve some form of distraction, but texting while driving falls into all three categories. Smartphones are involved in 1.6 million auto accidents every year. Of all the activities related to distracted driving, texting while driving is by far the most dangerous.
- By listening or talking the risk increases by 1.3 times.
- Reaching for your device increases by 1.4 times.
- But, texting while driving makes an accident 23 times more likely to happen.
If those facts are not sufficient enough – here are more to think about.
- Research tells us that teens have a reaction time of a 70 year old when distracted while driving.
- The risk of having an auto accident is 4 times greater when a driver uses the smartphone, whether using bluetooth (handsfree) or not.
- The AAA (Traffic Safety) studied nearly 1,700 videos of teens driving actions, moments before a crash – The AAA (Traffic Safety) found that distractions were a factor in nearly 6 out of 10 moderate to severe crashes.
However, just because teens are texting frequently doesn’t mean adults are completely innocent.
- 48% of teen drivers report seeing their parents texting while driving and 48% of children aged 12-17 report having been in a vehicle while the driver was texting.
I have asked many students about their feelings on texting while driving. The response was very shocking. Many students have said that it’s not a big deal to them because they know their parents are always talking and texting on their smartphone while driving and nothing has happened to them yet……..
Life is more important than that incoming message or call.
Ok, now do you see that texting and driving don’t mix!
Call to action:
Now that you have taken time to read this post, I hope that I was successful in making a connection with you. Of course, using smartphones is very convienent but do not lose sight of reality.
Using the smartphone has its place and proper time to be in your hand.
- If you need to transit, let everyone know before you get in your vehicle that you will be away from your phone.
- If you are with your family, this is family time – your device can be replaced but those moments with family will never be replaced if missed.
- If you are on a date with that (girlfriend/boyfriend), (wife/husband) -leave the phone where it belongs, in your purse or pocket.
What I am telling you here is common sense.
If someone or something needs your full attention then give your full attention.