Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Texting While Driving

I remember when they passed seat belt laws in Texas. I reluctantly got in the habit of buckling up. But it was a good thing, and if the law weren’t in place today, I would still buckle up. After all, it makes the possibility of my surviving an accident so much higher. It helps me, and my passengers who also buckle up, be safer. So while my buckling up may not do much for you, it’s good for me, and I’m happy to oblige.

It's odd that we have seat belt laws in 49 states, drunk driving laws in 50 states, yet there are very limited texting while driving laws. To me, texting while driving more resembles drunk drinking than it does seat belt usage, and should be treated similarly.

Seat belts protect passengers, but they do nothing to prevent accidents. Texting while driving endangers passengers and causes accidents (like drunk driving does). So it seems weird that most states have a law that requires you protect yourself (seat belt), but they don’t have a law that prevents you from injuring others (texting). Or if there is a law, it’s limited, such as no usage around a school zone or with passengers in the car under age 17.

Also odd, almost everyone I talk with agrees that texting is bad while driving and claim not to do it. Yet it only takes a few miles down the road to see that’s clearly not the case. People text and drive a lot! What can possibly be so important in that 160 character message to risk lives?

I wonder if some day there will be a law completely banning texting while driving? Who knows, but in the meantime, I can tell everyone I know not to text and drive. And I urge you to do the same. Texting while driving is bad for everyone, and not only endangers the lives of those texting, but the innocent victims that are hit as a result. And sometimes the accident is so bad, that even the seat belt isn’t going to save you.


Cristy Witherspoon said...

Texting while driving is a huge risk to you, me, and society. If the message is that important, then you should call them. Perhaps, get on the side of the road then text, or you can text while on a stop. Accidents are unpredictable and can happen to anyone, but it can be avoided.

Erminia Cavins said...

I hope there will be an imposed law to stop drivers who are fond of texting while driving. I just had an accident last month because he person who wrecked my car is texting while driving, and now I can’t work. I’m glad that he paid for all my expenses and somehow, my expenses are shouldered by my Social Security benefits.

-Erminia Cavins-

Sheryl Tuttle said...

Thank you for your comments Cristy Witherspoon and Erminia Cavins. I agree that there is no message so important that it cannot wait until you are stopped somewhere. I would even take it a step further and say that cell phone usage in general is unsafe while driving. Some people say it is no different than a conversation with someone in the car. Not true. When you have a conversation with someone in the car, that person is also aware of your surroundings. They can pause the conversation when needed to let you (the driver) focus. A cell phone conversation is more distracting. Thanks again.