We've all been there before - we're in the car, our phone is close by, and we hear it start ringing or buzz from a text. You're suddenly faced with a huge decision: do I look at my phone, or do I ignore it? The problem is that too many people don't realize the gravity of this decision - they believe they are invincible, that they are somehow special and are protected from all the risks they've been warned about. Teenagers are especially guilty of this, and parents across the country struggle to convince their children to leave cell phones out of reach when driving, but naive kids aren't the only ones at risk.
Individuals who send and/or read texts while driving are 23% more likely to get into car accidents than those who don't, and the average accident occurs after the driver has been distracted for a mere three seconds. If this isn't terrifying enough to put down your phone while driving, consider that the United States Department of Transportation reports 1.6 million auto crashes related to cell phone use each year. Out of those 1.6 million crashes, about half a million people walk away with injuries, and about 6,000 will die. It's so simple to just leave your phone out of reach while driving that even one death a year related to phone use would be too much; 6,000 deaths a year is a catastrophe.
Too many people hear these statistics and believe that they are still somehow exempt, like they have a heightened ability to read, write, and drive all at the same time. Don't, not even for a second, fall victim to this line of thinking. The Virginia Tech Transportation Institute reports that texting while driving is six times more likely to cause a car crash than driving while intoxicated. Let that sink in for a second. When you text while driving, you're more of a threat than someone who is driving while above the legal alcohol limit. If you would be scared to drive on the freeway next to a drunk driver, then it's a no-brainer as to why you should never use your phone while driving.
The PSA below was created by AT&T to remind us that no one is safe when it comes to texting and driving. Glancing at your phone for even a few seconds could be the difference between life and death, and until car accidents caused by phone use stop claiming lives, this message needs to be shared prolifically. For all those who have ever been in or know a loved one who has been affected by texting while driving, please share this video to make the roads a safer place.