Texting and Driving
By: Jared Szaltis
Should it be legal to drive, while distracted?
¨It’s not distracting¨, a common argument said by those who support DISTRACTED DRIVING, texting while driving is a serious problem throughout the US, with over 82% of American teenagers (16 and over) owning a cell, and with 34% of teen drivers saying that they have texted while driving. Cell phone use should not be allowed while driving, excluding hands free device (A story for another day). The government should put more laws in place to restrict cell phone use while driving to reduce it so it help save the state millions, to prevent the killing of thousands of lives each year, and to minimize the chance to get into an accident involving texting and driving.
Making new laws to prohibit the use of cell phones, to help save millions of $$, so that they can be used in other programs such as World Aid, Energy and Education, etc..
The US spends over $175 billion dollars with productivity losses, property damage, medical and rehabilitation costs, congestion costs, legal and court costs, emergency services, insurance administration costs, and the costs to employers, and more due to texting and driving. Similar to the War on Terror Costs, the costs spent on texting and driving over time could have been spent to provide FREE energy for ⅔ of the American population. The laws could help provide better education and resources for disadvantaged children and families.
The laws could help prevent the deaths/injuries of hundreds of thousands of people per year.
Drivers involved in texting and driving accidents are more likely to be killed/injured, especially male drivers. Having stricter laws and penalties would decrease the amount of causalities every year and make people decide not to text and drive. Along side these law, the government should adopt new laws and penalties for those who aren't wearing seat belts, since 60% of young adults who have passed away due to texting and driving, were not wearing seat belts. As of 2012 on average, 9-11 teens die every day due to texting and driving.
Insurance Rate Hikes
The laws could reduce the risk of getting into an accident involving texting and driving.
¼ car accidents are caused by texting and driving. Texting while driving increases your risk of getting into a car crash by 23%, 24% if you have one passenger, and 28% with 2 or more passengers. The risk also increases for people just driving near the distracted driver, not doing anything. Distracted driving puts more people than just you at risk. The minimal amount of time that your attention is taken from the road by looking at your phone, which if you are driving at approximately 55-60 mph you could travel the length of a football field! In that amount of time you could have hit who knows what! Over 1.3 million car crashes are caused by texting behind the wheel every YEAR.
Hands-free technology is cheap and available
This can change.
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