If you are a teenager who likes to use your cell phone all day long, there are a few things that you should understand. First of all, you need to realize that sometimes you will be in a situation where you have to put down the phone for a while for your own safety and for the safety of those around you. For instance, when you get into a car and attempt to drive, you shouldn’t text. Doing so may endanger your own life and the lives of other people.
Distracted driving of any sort comes with numerous repercussions that you don’t want to experience. In this guide, we will provide you with a few tips to consider before you choose to text and drive.
Distracted Driving Facts and Statistics
Texting creates a major distraction while you are driving. In fact, the average amount of time that you may be distracted from the road while texting is about 5 seconds. In a vehicle traveling approximately 55 miles per hour, you will be essentially driving the length of a football field without looking where you are going.
Of all the distracted driving-related accidents, nearly 18% of them were caused by people being on their cell phones. Even if the driver wasn’t physically holding the cell phone but was on some sort of a hands-free device, he or she was still distracted from the surrounding environment, which led to accidents.
Hands-free or voice-activated text message and email services that are present on your phone or in your car are some of the most major distractions for drivers nowadays. Although you may not be directly holding onto the phone and controlling it, you have to press the buttons in your car or on your Bluetooth headset, speak the proper commands to the device, and then speak the full content of your message or email. This takes your mind off the more important task of focusing on the road and distracts you by causing you to think about something else.
Rules and Regulations
In over 30 states, texting while driving is illegal. This means that even if you do not get into an accident as a result of distracted driving, you can still be pulled over and cited if a police officer catches you using the cell phone while you are driving. Is it really worth the risk? The average cost of a ticket received for texting and driving is approximately $159, money that most teenagers simply don’t have.
When you first get into your car, put your phone away. If that means putting it in your purse or pants pocket, or if you simply have to put it in the cup holder or glove box, do that. If you do receive a call or text message, don’t react to the phone. Just let it ring or make noises until you get to a place where you can safely pull over and respond to the calls and texts.
Keep in mind that you don’t have to be constantly glued to your phone. Even if you’re having an important conversation, your friends and family members will more than likely understand if you can’t respond for several minutes. In fact, most people would probably rather have you be safe than take a chance on responding to a text message and cause a terrible accident.
If you are a teen driver who likes to use your cell phone a lot, the best advice is this: don’t text while driving. Yes, you may hear this from a lot of people on a frequent basis, but they are only giving you this advice because they care about you and want you to be safe. They also don’t want to see you get into serious trouble for causing a wreck because of distracted driving. Bottom line: use common sense and be safe while you are driving, and you shouldn’t encounter any legal problems.
Are you and your teens safe from distracted driving? Get the facts and solutions in this infographic.