Texting and Driving Should Be Banned

Have you ever considered reading a book while driving? If not then why would you text and drive? Driving is something that requires your full attention. When you open up your cell phone to send a text or receive a text then you might as well get out a book and start reading. Suppose you are driving down the road and your phone alerts you that you have a text message coming in, when you grab for that phone you are a victim of visual, cognitive, and manual distraction. Many people have lost their lives due to visual distraction. When you take your eyes off of the road, it only takes one second to cause an accident.

I am sure if sixteen year old Ashley Johnson could start her day over she would. On May the 15 this exceptional, popular tenth grader had been texting while driving when she hit a pickup head on. She was in critical care for several days before dying sustained to injuries that occur during her accident. Not only did she lose her life but someone lost their daughter, granddaughter, sister and friend. If only she could have waited until she stopped driving. Patrick Sims is another prime example of why you should not text and drive. Patrick and his girlfriend were driving down the road the day before Thanksgiving.

Patrick was texting a friend when his girlfriend started screaming, as he looked up there was a bicyclist so close to the front of his vehicle that he could not avoid hitting him. This was a sixty three year old grandfather that was out riding his bike for health reasons, minding his own business. Now this is something that this young man has to deal with for the rest of his life. He told CBS during an interview that he wished that he could have another chance; he also told them that the image of this man lying on the street dead would never leave his mind.

I remember texting one time while I was driving and it was the first time and the last. I got a text message and I wasn’t going to read it but I was scared it was my mom or about my mom because she was sick. I was going to wait till I stopped at the red-light to check it but it was just too tempting to wait so I grabbed my phone to read my text when I ran off of the side of the road. That was a stupid decision on my behalf. It was only my niece wanting to know what I was doing. It was not just my life in danger it was also my children’s. I decided that day that I would never read a text again while driving.

I am just thankful and fortunate that I got another chance. I honestly believe when you put yourself or someone else’s life in jeopardy by texting it is not an accident. You know exactly what you are doing when you open that phone and start typing or reading. Texting should not be just ban from people that drive automobiles but it should also be for people who drive trains and buses. It is a cognitive distraction when you take your mind off of what you are doing. On September the twelfth two thousand and ten, Robert Sanchez a commuter train engineer started his day like every other day.

I’m sure when he left his home that morning he never thought it would be his last day returning home. During the day Robert was texting and receiving text from a young guy who he mentors. Robert did not yield and hit a freight train head on killing twenty five people and injuring eighty more. Roberts’s life was taking that day instantly. His life was taken just because he answered a text letting this young boy know where he was. This could have been prevented. Not only is his family grieving but so are all of the innocent lives that were taking that day.

If you feel like you are too tempted to text while driving then you need to turn off your phone until you get stopped or put it away where you cannot reach it. Texting don’t only cause you to take your mind off of your driving but when your texting you don’t have on your hands on the wheel. When you are driving it is important that you drive with your hands not your knees or your forearm. I’m sure some people don’t think manual distraction is such a big issue when it comes to driving, but trust me it is. It is just as important as visual or cognitive distraction. Any time that you are driving you need to avoid all three distractions.

You have a better chance reacting to a situation if you are driving with both hands. I know a young lady that went to school with my nephew. She was driving home one day after school, it was her and her little brother Ben. Sarah was texting while driving, Ben said that she had her knee up under the steering wheel driving and she came upon a curve and she just couldn’t react fast enough and lost control, she was killed. Her brother survived this terrible tragedy physically but not mentally. It has been ten years now and this young man is still seeing his sister lay beside him in this car bleeding from the head and not responsive.

I feel like people are just selfish when it comes to texting. I know a lot of people don’t think about the consequences but it’s time that people wake up and see what texting and driving can do to families. I understand that texting is the new fad and some people rather text then talk. Texting is not a necessity to life. Many people have lost their lives because they made the wrong choice. I’m sure if the victims that have been involved in a misfortune could have another chance to drive without texting and take more responsibility for their actions they would.

Driving is something that takes all the attention you can offer. That includes watching where you’re going, keeping your mind on what you’re doing and keeping both hands where they need to be. If you feel like you just can’t wait to text pull over to a safe place and text. Before you text and drive again visualize a loved one in your life and ask yourself this question, is it fair to them that I am being so selfish, not caring if I take my life or someone else’s life? I promise you that you’re not going to die if you have to wait to text but if you don’t wait to text you will definitely die.

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