Texting and Driving – It Can Wait!

texting-can-wait

The cellular phone has brought with it many conveniences and luxuries. It has definitely made communication so much easier. However, when it comes to road safety, the cellular phone may be considered a hazard especially when Short Message Service was introduced.

Ever since the advent of text messages, society has grown aware of the dangers of texting while driving. Text messages are brief messages which are often limited to 160 characters and can be sent from one cell phone to another. This ability to be able to send short messages has been embraced by millions of people worldwide, as shown by the number of text messages exchanged every day.

Unfortunately, the service is so convenient that some people even compose and send text messages anytime and anywhere – while walking, eating, and even while driving. The growing number of accidents caused while texting and driving has put to the forefront the dangers of texting while driving.

Driving is an activity that requires full concentration and composing, reading, and sending text messages will compromise the driver’s concentration. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 16% of all fatal crashes in 2008 were caused by driver distraction.

Nowadays, we can find many studies that examine the effects of texting while driving. The one conclusion they all seem to come up with is that texting impairs a driver’s abilities. One of the most obvious things that happen when a driver is texting while driving is that the driver would avert his eyes from the road for around five seconds. This is more than enough time for a person to run in front of the vehicle or for the vehicle in front of you to make a sudden stop or to miss seeing the light change.

Another thing that happens when a driver is texting is that his mind would be on the message he is reading or composing. This, of course, prevents the driver from thinking quickly and compromises his reflexes. Chances are, he will not be able to react quickly to a situation on the road because he is thinking of something else.

Despite the urgency of any text message, the dangers of texting while driving should be more than enough reason to put off texting. The best solution is to put your cellular phone on silent mode while driving especially if you are not expecting anything very important and urgent anyway. This way, you will not be tempted to check and read any messages that come in. It is better to wait until you reach your destination before reading or sending any text messages. Another option is to stop driving if you absolutely must use your cell phone. Of course, to prevent all kinds of dangers of texting while driving, make sure that your car is in a safe place that will not obstruct traffic when you decide to use your cell phone.

Article Source: http://www.phillyalumnae-dst.org/user/image/deltahealthwatchoct2010-texting.pdf

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