Almost everyone has a cell phone nowadays, and they use it for all sorts of things. They not only make calls with it, they use it for shopping and browsing the internet, for playing games and watching videos. And they also use it send text messages for communication, often much more than they use the phone option. The majority of those that do have cell phones have it with them almost all the time, and this includes in the car.
Distracted driving is one of the major causes of car accidents and personal injury claims, and these distractions can take many forms, from listening to the radio to eating and drinking in the car, from thinking about different things to talking on the phone. Ever since cell phone usage started becoming popular, steps have been taken to help people drive safely while using them, such as creating hands-free sets and bluetooths. But with the growing popularity of text messaging for communicating, cell phone usage in vehicles is becoming a hot topic again. People are already becoming aware of the dangers of texting while driving, with some programs having already been started to help raise the awareness and get people to stop, such as the Wait To Text program with thumb bands, and staged accidents at schools to help teens realize the dangers. Texting while driving has also been banned or made a finable offense in many cities and states, and it includes reading texts or texting at stop lights.
Driving safely while texting can be very difficult to do, as your eyes will constantly be taken off the road while you are reading the incoming message and typing your reply. To stay safe on the roads with your cell phones, here are few safe driving tips to keep in mind:
- Make any calls or texts you need to before you get on the road and program your GPS ahead of time.
- As with setting a designated driver for drinking, elect a friend to be your designated texter while you’re driving.
- Put the phone someplace where you can’t see it while you’re driving.
- Turn off or silence notifications that might tempt you to look.
- Mute/silence or turn off your phone.
- Use apps that will block incoming messages or send automated responses, such as, “I’m driving.”
- Be patient. Tell yourself “It can wait.” There’s no message important enough that its worth your life.
- Take one of the many pledges available and promise to not drive while distracted.
- If it just can’t wait, pull over when you can do so safely.
- If you know someone is going to be driving at the time, be caring and don’t text them.
- If you’re a parent, set an example for your teen to follow and don’t text and drive.
- Parents, set ground rules for your car and forbid your teen from texting and driving. Also, look into apps that will let you monitor their activity.
These tips will help you to drive safely and keep you from texting while on the road. Remember, no text message is worth dying for.
Founder of The Complete Guide to Natural Healing (www.thecompleteherbalguide.com)
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