Stop texting and driving

You’re driving back home from school after a long exam, only thinking of sleeping. You hear a beep from your cell phone, indicating you just received a text message.

With one hand on the steering wheel, you pick up your phone and read the text from your friend, then hit reply to answer. Your eyes are on the keys and not on the road. Suddenly, you hear a car’s loud honk and look up in time to see a car just feet from yours.

Now, this would not have ended very well for anyone, and it is a lesson to those who think texting and driving is the cool thing to do and can be done without danger to anyone. Texting is all fine and dandy for people to do, and driving is also very fine, but putting them together is not safe at all.

When someone is driving, their attention must be on the road and nothing else. However, someone who is texting while driving obviously has to look down, which causes the driver’s attention to waver from the road. Additionally, typing out a response gives the driver the ability to only use one hand while driving.

According to a survey conducted by local ABC affiliate WHSV-TV, about 25% of 16- and 17-year-olds say they text while they drive. How dangerous is that? Millions of inexperienced drivers on the road, texting while driving. No one would want to be on the road with such people, for fear of getting into an accident.

As if that weren’t reason enough to be concerned, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said that last year 6,000 people were killed in accidents related to distracted drivers. This is 6,000, not 6. Distraction could be anything, from texting to scrolling through an Ipod to messing with the radio.

Many people also think it is easy to text and drive and view it as killing two birds with one stone. They think it would waste time to text when you park, get home or even just stop somewhere. Weaving through traffic is easy. You’ve been doing it while talking on the phone; why not while texting?

Well here’s why: A study was conducted a couple months ago where drivers where tested on how well they could drive with and without distractions. The first time through, drivers were given a virtual scene to drive through without any distractions. These drivers did fine.

The second time, they were given the same virtual scene, but with a cell phone to text with. The results were disastrous. The drivers were distracted to the point where they ran over virtual cars and pedestrians. Thank God they were it was only a simulation, but this shows the dangers of texting while driving.

Not only is it deadly for the driver, but for any passenger, pedestrian or any other drivers on the road. People who drive and text may think they would only harm themselves if anything happens, but no, other victims could be caught in an accident as well.

Therefore, this should be a lesson as well as a warning to those who text and drive. No need for any deadly accidents.

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