No message is that important

Published 10:28 pm Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Instant gratification is the method of choice for most of our daily activities. If it can’t be done fast, then why bother doing it at all? This seems to be our mentality.

But there are lines that shouldn’t be crossed. When our ability to multitask is taken on the road, lives are at risk.

According to a national study, 28 percent of all motor vehicle accidents are linked to either someone talking on a cell phone or texting while driving. This statistic should serve as a wake-up call.

Use of a cell phone behind the wheel is distracting for several reasons. Your eyes may be on the road, but your mind may be focused more on the conversation than what is in front of you. Unless you have a Bluetooth device, at least one hand must be used to grip the cell phone.

Texting takes things a step further. If you must look away to read a text message or to make sure you are pressing the correct buttons, then for a split second you have no idea what’s on the road. That split second could mean life or death, because the situation on a highway can change in an instant.

Chances are you use both hands while texting. This leaves only your elbows to steer your vehicle, which is dangerous.

The bottom line is, no message is worth risking your life (and the lives of others) to send. If a message is that important, then it’s important enough for you to pull off the road for a few seconds.

Mobile technology has created new situations, and we now need new laws to cover them. With any power comes responsibility; let’s do the responsible thing and drive safely.