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Monday, January 28, 2013

It's Time To Make A Vow about Texting And Driving!

Not too long ago, Pastor Bob and I had a discussion about funerals, which we readily agreed, are never easy. They're even more difficult when for a young person.  While we were chatting, Bob mentioned that we should gird ourselves for the possibility of doing one for a young person who has an accident while texting. I remember thinking, "What could be so important that you would risk your life to answer a text message?"

Later that day, while riding down Rt 66, I was awestruck by the number of people I passed who were texting while moving along at 60 MPH. They were easy enough to see. As you begin to pull alongside them, they usually have their phone held up near the top of the steering wheel, I guess so they can text and pretend they can see where the're going at the same time. That discussion came back to me and I thought, "It's not just young people."

On the way back to Warrenton, while on 66, going in the opposite direction, I received a text from a friend. As I was traveling along at about 60 MPH, answering him, I was stunned by the realization that it wasn't just young people and people in the other lane...it was me! I almost threw the phone out the window!

When I got home, Kelly and I sat down and discussed it. We vowed never to leave each other in such a mindless way. It wasn't until after making the vow that I began to think there were worse things a Christian can suffer than death.

Like needlessly taking another life over a text. 

Watching the documentary below has made my resolve even firmer. Now I want to share it with those who are close to me. I don't want to lose any of my family, friends or even casual acquaintances over this no-brainer. I don't want to see them agonize over something so trivial as taking your eyes off the road to answer some mindless question or make some mindless remark. 

Please...watch this video but please read what's below it as well:



AT&T has a few free and helpful programs to avoid these kinds of stories being told. Here are some more.

There's a app called "Drive Safe Mode" that will alert a parent or loved one when someone's cell phone is in use while the vehicle is moving. It consts $1.99 a month to be fully functional. Some complain about the expense. I wonder if any of the folks in the video above would think $2 was expensive. 

It's not just texting that can be a problem. Using our navigation programs, finding playlists on our iPods, searching for a nearby restaurant...all of the newest in-car connectivity functions can be deadly if used while moving down the road at about 100 feet per second (right around 63 MPH). 

Do yourself a huge favor, go outside, place a marker on the ground and pace off about 100 feet. Look back and see where your marker is...this is actually scary! If you're looking for a reality jolt, check out the pictures below and think about moving the distance shown in the picture on the right in 1 second. 

Image on the right is what 100 feet looks like. The close up on the left is so the sign can be read..

The typical glance at a phone or nav screen takes 2-3 seconds. Look at this!

The distance on the right is how far a car will move at highway speeds in 2-3 seconds. 

Make the vow with us. Write it down, sign it, put it on your review mirror, say it every time you get in the car...do whatever you have to do...but do it. Then, ask someone close to you to make it as well. 

Nothing is so important it can't wait until you're parked and safe. 

2 comments:

  1. Thank you for sharing, John....I wish I had the email address of the entire population of Fredericksburg...I'd send them this most compelling clip...!!!...

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  2. I'm with you. No more texting while driving! - Alan Burnham

    ReplyDelete