Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Texting, Driving & Kids...

When it comes to driving, you just can’t be too careful. Something can happen, that requires a fast split-second response, that can either save you or cost you your life. Kids don’t get that. I was reading a heartbreaking and tragic story yesterday about a young college student who was texting while driving. She was killed. Her final text was: "I can't discuss this now. Driving and facebooking is not safe! Haha." 

Taylor Sauer, 18, was driving home in January, to visit her parents in Idaho, and while driving she was texting her friend about the Denver football team. She was going over 80 miles per hour in Interstate 84 when she crashed into a tanker truck that was going up a hill at 15 mph. She died instantly. Her cell phone records show she was texting every 90 seconds during her trip. Taylor knew she was doing the wrong thing at the time, she even said so in her text. But, kids think nothing bad can ever happen to them. Idaho is one of 13 states that does not ban texting while driving. But, even if they had a law in place, are kids deterred from texting?

Taylor was an honor student. She graduated from high school with a 3.9 GPA and was class salutatorian . She was active in community service. She played softball. And even with all her intelligence, she stills thinks, like every other 18 year old, that she is invincible. Now all her parents want is for Idaho to pass a law banning the use of texting while driving. They are fighting for this just two months after their daughter’s death.I can’t imagine how devastated they must be. I am including the video of the story below, which includes what Taylor’s parents are trying to do the change the law and prevent any more deaths due to using devices while driving.

There are many stories just like this one. Passing a law may deter some students, but not all. Kids need a visual. The school system needs to educate students long before they get their license about the dangers of using cell phones in any way, while driving. I tell my own kids not to play with the radio dial or pop in their cds while driving. The reason is that I noticed they would take their eyes off the road for a split second to see what they were doing. It made me nervous and I begged them not to do that unless they were stopped at a red light. As long as the car is moving, you need to focus your attention 100% on driving and what’s going on around you. You can’t be too safe. I just hope they are listening to me and get it. I hope they read this blog and watch the video. No parent should have to go to their 18 year old’s funeral because they made the mistake of texting or talking on a cell phone while driving. No parent should be told their child will never walk again or suffered brain damage because they spent a few seconds texting and crashed. There are no do-overs. You can’t turn back time. The damage is done. There are enough risks to driving, without adding more dangerous and unnecessary ones to the list.

Maybe, if you have a young driver in your family, you should let them watch the video and have a discussion that could save their life today.

1 comment:

  1. It is certainly a good thing that you recognize the risks of texting while driving, and we applaud your efforts to warn your own children about additional forms of distracted driving. As you stated, nobody can be too careful when driving and every second counts for reaction time. We wish more motorists would appreciate the danger they are placing other drivers in by concentrating on their phones rather than the road.