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Texting While Walking or Driving Essay

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For several years, people's use of electronics has slowly increased, resulting in a diversion from things that are important in life. According to Ian Mulgrew, a Canadian writer, in the article “Cell Phone Use While Driving Requires Strict Penalties,” many injuries are caused by impaired driving, with the majority of disruptions being the use of mobile phones (1). Many drivers lead busy lives with little time to get all done in a day, but the only time they get to read their emails and send text messages is while driving. Many laws are put in place to prevent texting while driving so as to reduce accidents although many drivers do not adhere to them. No matter the age of the driver, a majority of them text while driving.

When drivers text when driving, they not only put their lives in danger but also endanger the lives of the passengers in the vehicles and other road users. Texting and driving is the most dangerous and deadly of all the distracted driving, the reason being that it uses the manual, visual and the cognitive attention of the driver (“What” 1). But now since the drivers spend most of their time on the road, their social connections are cut off, and the only thing is to reach their friends through texts. Whenever a driver hears their phone vibrate, they cannot resist picking the phone. The cellular attention draws away the driver’s focus on the road.

Copeland, in his article “‘Awareness gap” on road texting, reported that the lives of innocent drivers are taken every day by a mere distraction (1). Most car crashes occur due to drivers are on their mobile devices than from any other causes. These days, talking on a cell phone while driving is not as risky as texting while driving because while speaking on the phone one can keep the focus on the road. Engaging in a texting while driving doesn’t allow the driver to look at once at both directions and again one cannot have their both hands on the wheel resulting in several car crashes.

In 2011 alone, twenty-three percent of car accidents resulted from cell phone usage on the road (“DWI” 1). Many drivers admit that texting while driving can be horrific but only a few keep their mobile phones away while on the road. According to the article “DWI,” texting and receiving texts on the road takes the driver’s attention off the way for about 4.6 seconds. The statistics indicate that drivers are driving blind. A person who texts while driving is six times more likely to cause road accidents than even those under alcohol intoxication.

Mann Jackson observed that texting while driving requires multitasking which only 2% of the drivers can manage (1), but this doesn’t give them the legal authority to text while driving. Despite the danger involved in texting while on the road, some countries don’t have any laws against it. States that have the laws in place to prevent texting with the mobile devices on the hands only give fines to those caught. Other countries advocate for the drivers to text while driving saying that there are other forms of distraction that drivers experience and so single out texting (Hosansky 1).

“What” reports that despite the fact that many people support texting while driving is not hazardous, statistics don’t lie because those who text while driving create a twenty-three times risk of worse accidents than the accidents occurring without distraction (1). David Hosansky, in his article "Distracted Driving: Should Driver Texting and Cellphone Use Be Banned?" reports that many people die due to distracted drivers. Some of the death incidences he reports are the little boy, Xzavier Davis-Bilbo that was run over by a young woman who was driving while texting leaving him paralyzed, shattering his dreams of becoming a footballer (Hosansky 1). Text driving is careless driving as it can take only a few seconds to ruin or take away the life of a person.

Multiple drivers think that texting to stay connected with friends is of great importance than driving carefully to save lives of others who are hoping to reach their destination safely. There are several reasons as to why people would text and drive, although many of them remain ununderstood. Some drivers think that they can multitask while others are stubborn to accept how dangerous texting while driving is, making some to learn from the mistakes they make on the road. Many drivers read and understand the road statistics on texting and driving, but unfortunately, the majority of them conclude that the drivers who cause accidents while texting do not know how to do it in the right way (“DWI”1). Others ignore these statistics only to learn through the tragic and hard way that it is dangerous.

The many accidents that occur clearly show that many drivers never value the passengers’’ lives or that of other drivers and road users, yet many the drivers confidently say that texting is a problem and makes them spend the most of their time driving outside their lane. The majority of drivers who text while driving validates their actions through saying that it is safer to read a message than composing or sending one. Again they argue that during texting, they hold their cellular device close to the windshield to enhance visibility, increase their following distance and that texting is done at a stop or when the red light shows, but this is not the case (“DWI” 1).

Many people they agree that texting while driving causes distraction and is dangerous although the majority don’t pledge against it. The National Safety Council reports that traffic fatalities in 2016 increased by six percent, insinuating that over one hundred and ten people die in traffic every day. Pedestrians deaths become more each day than any other traffic fatalities. According to Richard Retting, the Sam Schwartz Transportation Consultant safety director, miles that people drive do not count for the surge in the pedestrian and traffic fatalities as the distraction caused by mobile phone usage.

Researchers speculate that the leading factor in deaths on the road for drivers and walkers is cellular phones and the other electronic devices that cause a distraction. An article “A Solution” reported that there was a day that a pickup was driving erratically along the two-lane road to the and it several times crossed the center lane. In the end, the truck drifted off its road and hit a church minibus that was carrying a group of senior citizens from a retreat, and thirteen of them died. Only the driver of the pickup survived, but the only thing he said was, “I am sorry, I was texting.” At the period of this occurrence, the Texas legislature was considering the bill to prohibit texting while driving.

The solution to texting driving issue is for drivers to open their eyes and see the dangers that texting while driving causes. An understanding and pledging against texting while driving would reduce the number of accidents and make roads safer. Distracted drivers have to understand the position they put themselves in as well as the others. Drivers should never focus their attention on the cell phone and keep their eyes on the road. The government should strictly implement the laws governing road usage (“DWI” 1). Were it that legislation that prohibits texting and driving were in place, they could save the thirteen lives lost from the accident.

If one is driving in a car with a person who is always on the phone texting, receiving and making calls, they should speak out and tell them they are uncomfortable as this is hazardous, thus save the life of the driver, the passengers and those of the other road users. Every person should be responsible for their actions if deaths on the roads are to reduce. Drivers who have tried by all means to avoid texting while driving and found it impossible, switching the cell phone completely or silencing it while driving helps prevent the texting temptations. Again a driver can lock the cell phone with a passphrase that reminds them not to text or handle the cell phone, hide their cell phone or use a technology that locks the driver’s phone when they are on the road.

References

Copeland, Larry. “‘Awareness gap’ on road texting.” USA Today Sept. 2010: 03A Gale Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Web. 18 Apr. 2012.

Mulgrew, Ian. “Cell Phone Use While Driving Needs Stiff Penalties.” Cell Phones and Driving. Ed. Stefan Kiesbye. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2011. At Issue. Rpt. from “Ticket for Using a Cellphone While Driving Doesn’t Go Far Enough.” Vancouver Sun 9 Nov. 2009. Gale Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Web. 18 Apr. 2012.

"DWI: Driving While Intexticated." Texting and Driving Safety. N.p., n.d. Web. 28 Nov. 2012.http://www.textinganddrivingsafety.com/texting-and-driving-stats/

Hosansky, David. "Distracted Driving: Should Driver Texting and Cellphone Use Be Banned?" CQ Researcher Online. CQ Press, 4 May 2012. Web. 28 Nov. 2012. http://library.cqpress.com.sinclair.ohionet.org/cqresearcher/document.php?id=cqresrre2012050400&&num=3

Mann Jackson, Nancy. "Cell Phones and Texting Endanger Teen Drivers." Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Gale, n.d. Web. 28 Nov. 2012. http://ic.galegroup.com.sinclair.ohionet.org/ic/ovic/ViewpointsDetailsPage/ViewpointsDetailsWindow?

"What Is Distracted Driving?" Distraction.gov. U.S. Department of Transportation, n.d. Web. 28 Nov. 2012. http://www.distraction.gov/content/get-the-facts/facts-and-statistics.html

October 20, 2021
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