Till only a few years back the famous campaigns by various governmental and non-governmental organizations asked people not to drink and drive, but over the years the scenario has changed. The advent of smartphones and increased popularity of SMSs and chat-tools have made Driving and Texting a lethal and dangerous combo too. Off late texting has been one of the most prominent reasons of accidents and collisions on the roads, which have claimed a horrific number of lives. Alexander Heit, a 22-years old student of University of Northern Colorado is the latest victim of this spiraling problem. The writing on the wall seems pretty vivid and clear, just like talking on cellphones is illegal while driving, texting while driving should be made illegal and a punishable offence too.
Texting while driving is an unacceptable since it causes distraction, which is one of the main reasons behind road accidents. According to The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in 2010 driver distraction was the cause of 18 percent of all fatal crashes and claimed a staggering 3,092 lives and injuring over 400 thousand people (FCC 2013). The distraction-based accidents have been on rise and texting while driving has only worsened the conditions. In fact, the minimal amount of time one’s attention is taken off the road while texting is way too higher than other forms of distraitment and thus texting while driving is indeed dangerous and very damaging. This high amount of distraction makes texting while driving much more vulnerable and likely to crash than any other activity like talking on phone or looking out for a device. The rise in the number of road accidents has risen to worrisome levels and texting and driving has contributed significantly to the gloomy figures. Hence, it only seems fit to take strict actions against all those who mix texting and driving and that the act should be banned with proper implementation.
Cars are indeed potential and powerful weapons and willful negligence while driving is as criminal as running blindfolded through a crowded room with a gun. Texting while driving not only the puts at risk the lives of driver and his/her co-passengers but also of others travelling on the road including the pedestrians. According to experts while a drunken driver needs 4 feet to stop, a driver reading an email 36 feet, and a driver sending a text 70 feet (Benish 2012)! This shows the extent of inherent and intrinsic negligence involved in driving which is mixed with texting. In a recent poll a whopping 80 percent of Americans admitted to using cell phones and 20 percent to texting, while driving (Chron 2009). Just like other forms of negligence like drunken driving, texting while driving can have grave consequences as it has shown in the recent years. It puts serious risk to everyone travelling on the road and hence involves many parties, which are in no way responsible for the act. Consequently, the ban on texting while driving should have no second thoughts since it has been found to be much more dangerous than the conventional forms of negligence or distractions which are already illegal. People indulging in texting while driving should be booked under sections of causing intentional hurt and injury in case they injure someone else since such people willfully resort to such negligence and carelessness.
Texting and driving, together, should be prohibited and made a punishable offence before it claims anymore innocent lives or before the situation gets real out of hands. The situation has been going from bad to worse and more and more are falling prey to the calamitous and catastrophic combination of texting and driving. There is a need to educate people about the perils of texting while driving and the associated dangers. The awareness levels of people are seriously low and it needs urgent and immediate attention. New laws banning texting while driving should be put in place and their implementation has to be really strict and rigorous. Fines and imprisonment terms should be awarded to those who are frequently found to be indulging in mixing both texting and driving. Making Texting illegal while driving is the only long-term solution to this problem that has the potential of claiming many more lives if not stopped or withheld.
Benish, Aimee. ”All states should ban texting while driving”
Daily Herald. 16 April 2013. Web. 2012
Chron. ”Deadly Distraction: Texting While Driving should be banned”
Chron. 16 April 2013. Web. 2009
FCC. ”The dangers of Texting While Driving”
Federal Communications Commission. 16 April 2013. Web. 2013