This week, we’re sharing a very important guest blog from our friends at Members AutoChoice, Peach State’s vehicle-buying service.
C U L8R – The Dangers of Texting and Driving
Everyone has had that moment when you’re driving down the road and you remember that you were supposed to text your boss with the day’s figures, and he needs them ASAP. Sometimes, it isn’t even as important as that, it can be something as simple as texting a joke to your friend or asking what’s for dinner. No matter what the reason, we are still picking up the phone to text while driving, and by doing so, we are putting our own lives at risk, as well as the lives everyone around us.
Georgia law tells us, and tells us quite clearly, DO NOT TEXT AND DRIVE. Texting and driving is extremely dangerous, and is responsible for thousands of deaths every year. It is a major problem in America, not just with younger people, but everyone. Many people don’t even think twice about opening their phone to read a message while driving down the road, or even worse, think they are capable of paying adequate attention to both driving and texting. When you text it requires visual, manual, and cognitive attention. This attention is taken away from the road, distracting you from the animal crossing street, or the car that is pulling out in front of you, possibly even the child trying to catch his bouncing ball. Is “LOL! C u l8r! J” really worth a life?
According to studies, at any given daylight moment, 660,000 drivers are using their phones or electronic devices. Out of those distracted drivers, there were 421,000 people involved in accidents resulting in injuries. That is nearly 64% of texting drivers that are involved in accidents. In 2013, the National Safety Council estimated at least 1.6 million crashes each year involve a driver using their cell phone and texting. Over 21% of fatal car crashes involving teenagers between the ages of 16 and 19 are the direct result of cell phone use, and this number is expected to grow as much as 4% each year.
Many people argue that texting and driving is way safer than drunk driving, despite numerous studies that prove texting and driving to be up to SIX times more dangerous. Drunk driving – a problem we have only recently begun to crack down on – is responsible for a decreasing number of annual deaths. Texting, however, is skyrocketing the number of fatal car collisions.
Distracted driving is unsafe, irresponsible, and can change your life in less than a second. There is no text that is ever going to be as important as your life or the life of the people around you. Staying safe, responsible, and alive is as simple as keeping the phone off for your commute. Please, put the phone down. You might just save a life.