Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The New Drunk Driving

A couple of days ago I wrote a post about cell phone usage while driving, however, I believe I failed to mention the greatest danger to anyone in a vehicle - text messaging.
This epidemic seems more widespread (and more harmful) than driving while on the phone. Anyone can hold a conversation while driving (and those that are all for cell phone usage while driving will cite that anyone with a passenger is "just as distracted" as they will be on their phone).
However, no one SHOULD text while driving (or dial their phone). The simple fact that you must take your eyes off the road in order to text is appalling. Sure, those "all for" the "right" to text while driving will also cite those who change the radio station or briefly look at a passenger when conversing with them - but the amount of time it takes to write a single text message is more than either of those scenarios. Then, what about the return text message? Absolutely, the texter will have to read the response to their own message that couldn't wait ten minutes until the driver pulled over. And all this leads to a major problem.
Without eyes on the road the likelihood of an accident is increased by an unmeasurable degree. Not only that, but the drivers that text often times swerve unbeknown to them as a motorist. They drive slow, mistaking their slower speed as caution, and cause traffic problems for those with places to go - and possibly text messages to send when the opportunity is SAFE to do so.
Which leads me to my point, is everyone that drives while texting a moron? Did you really want to risk your life to send off your latest "LOL" to your boyfriend or girlfriend? What does it matter? And why can it not wait?
It is really an easy solution, and that is - IT CAN WAIT! But those who partake in this practice tend to think they are the center of the world, otherwise, why would they put their life and the lives of those they do not even know into jeopardy?
The same can be said for drunk drivers, but at least they have a purpose - the bar closed, I have to get home - texting while driving has become an even greater epidemic because it is much more widespread, and all it accomplishes, other than the witty "LOL" texts, is a multitude of headaches for all the rest of us on the road.
Drunk driving can at least be understood, but the level of stupidity behind texting while driving is far beyond my scope of reasoning.
Update - Monday, August 18, 2008
I took this article from the Fox News Website:
Authorities say a 16-year-old girl who died after losing control of her car had been texting on her cell phone moments before the accident.
Kayla Preuss, of Highland, was driving on the Interstate 10 Freeway in Redlands when she lost control of her car and crashed. She died of head injuries. Phone records show Preuss was texting just before the accident. Her cell phone, which was flipped open, was found resting on the floorboard by her feet.
Preuss' mother Kelly said she hopes the accident will make other people think before texting and driving.

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