Texting and driving is a dangerous behavior that can have deadly consequences. According to the National Safety Council, cell phone use while driving causes 1.6 million crashes each year. In addition, at least nine people are killed each day due to distracted driving, and an estimated 1,000 are injured. Despite the known dangers, many drivers still engage in this risky behavior.
The risks associated with texting and driving are well-documented. When drivers’ attention is diverted from the road, their reaction time is slowed, increasing the risk of an accident. Texting and driving significantly increases the likelihood of a crash, as the driver takes his or her eyes off the road for an average of five seconds. During this time, the driver can travel the length of a football field without being in control of the vehicle.
Texting and driving is illegal in many states, yet it is still a pervasive behavior among drivers of all ages. Drivers who text and drive are more likely to engage in other risky behaviors, such as speeding, running stop signs and red lights, and tailgating. Additionally, texting and driving is particularly dangerous for teen drivers, who are already more likely to be involved in a crash due to inexperience.
We can all take steps to reduce the risk of texting and driving. Drivers should never use their phone while they are behind the wheel. This includes talking on the phone, sending or reading texts, checking emails, and engaging in any other type of electronic communication. Additionally, drivers should always use hands-free technologies such as Bluetooth headsets when engaging in conversations while driving.
If you are a passenger in a vehicle with a driver who is texting and driving, it is important to speak up. Let the driver know that you do not feel safe and ask them to stop. If the driver does not heed your warning, consider asking to be dropped off at the nearest safe place and notifying the driver’s parent or guardian of the situation.
We all have a responsibility to help keep our roads safe. By refusing to engage in texting and driving, we can help reduce the number of distracted driving-related accidents and save lives.