Sighting an ever growing body of research confirming that drivers distracted by electrical devices have accident rate similar to that of drunk drivers, yesterday Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood addressed the idea of preventing such distractions. The Secretary made it clear that he doesn’t want drivers texting, tweeting, toying with the GPS or dialing in any car while that car in moving. Evidence indicates that many will not follow the basic common sense of not taking your eyes off the road while driving.; So he’s proposing rules that would require car makers to install devices that stop working whenever the auto begins to move. The idea is his believe that this will save lives.
The danger of Texting while driving, claimed it’s latest victim; this time a your girl. This case is particularly troublesome because it was her own father who’s texting led to her death. Jonathan Harp of Lima, pleaded guilty to attempted vehicular homicide in the accident that took the life of one of his children and left the other in critical care.
According to his own admission, Mr. Harp was going 55 miles an hour while writing a text, when he crashed into the back of a truck. If found guilty he may go to prison for a year; though, as a father my self, I can’t imagine any punishment greater than knowing your carelessness led to the death of your child. I wonder if you are already “Living in Hell”, do you care about being moved to a prison.
Getting a ticket for “Texting while driving” will effect you car insurance rates for up to the next three years. Police are starting to focus on drivers that are violating the no texting law and insurance companies are charging more for car insurance based on the points on your MVR.
MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) has done a great job drawing attention to Drunk Driving. It is clear that driving while intoxicated is irresponsible, dangerous and illegal; it is time to recognize Texting while driving as an even greater distraction. While Seven states and the District of Columbia have banned “Driving while texting,” it has failed to seriously limit people from continuing what statistics show is reckless behavior. A new survey found that 26% of drivers admit to Texting while driving. With a son a year away from driving, I find it additionally frightening that nearly 60% of drivers between ages 16 to 19 admitted on the survey to doing so. For those under 25, texting is the principle way they communicate; actually using a cell phone to TALK, is only done after several texts back and forth.
We need to raise awareness, before more parents need to bury their child.