There’s one piece of wisdom we’d like to share with all you teenage and twenty-something drivers: It can wait.
What’s happening on your phone is not more important than the happenings while driving.
With the massive explosion of smartphone popularity here and abroad, its promise of near unlimited access to just about anything has also had serious and unintended side effects.
From texting, talking, email, movies, and music to social media, photos, games, and a whole host of other apps, that little device is an attention-grabbing potential killer in the car.
Nearly everyone and their brother—and sister and mother and father and neighbor and that one weird guy you saw at the gas station that one time—has a smartphone.
According to the Pew Research Center, as of February this year 72 percent of all U.S. adults have a smart phone and 92 percent of young adults have one. You can bet we’re not turning them off when we get behind the wheel.
“As we rely on our cell phones more and more in our everyday lives, we seem to be kidding ourselves in thinking that they don’t affect our driving,” says California’s Office of Traffic Safety Director Rhonda Craft. “Crashes are up. The scientific evidence is solid. The dangers are real, and they apply to all of us. We need to silence the distractions.”
“Scrolling through song lists on a cell phone, or texting while driving is not just irresponsible, it can have tragic consequences,” says U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx.
Dr. Kelly Browning, executive director of impact teen drivers says, “Simply put, we need to change our behavior behind the wheel. We need to keep both hands on the wheel, both eyes on the road, and our minds on driving. Focus on the road ahead to get to where you’re going safely – we all have loved ones counting on us.” – NHTSA, U.S. DOT and Safety Partners.
So when it comes to your cell phone, do the smart thing, let it ride—your loved ones will thank you for it.