There’s not a day that goes by when I don’t see someone, young or old, driving with a phone to their ear or looking down while instant messaging. It’s very perplexing considering that we all have access to BlueTooth earbuds (for calls), and the ability to pull over and make a text (or even voice recognition software that allows us to text via speech). How many times have you sat at a light, waiting for the car in front of you to “go” after the light turns green? It happens all the time because a lot of people use that short downtime to make a text. Or when you see someone crossing the double yellow lines in the middle of the day? Or another driver plowing through the front window of a building? Chances are that the driver is talking on the phone, or texting – or even eating, primping, or adjusting the radio. All of these bad habits can cause a lot of pain for the driver and for anyone else out on the road.
Did you know that in 2011, at least 23% of car crashes involved cell phones, which equals 1.3 million crashes*. I can only imagine what those stats are today, with more and more people relying on texts as a form of communication.
“I Drive Safely”, a national organization that intends to combat distracted drivers, recently announced that City Honors students and filmmakers Christina Schultz and Anna Blatto have landed second place in its ‘Watch Out Loud!’ teen video contest. “Distracted driving is a serious problem in today’s society since there is so much to be distracted by,” said Anna. “And since teenagers are so new to the road, it’s easy to think that we’re invincible. But it’s important to remember to be cautious as well. We thought it was important to highlight the potential deadly effects of acting in a reckless way while driving in an attempt to act as public informants.”
Christina concurred, saying, “”Producing informative videos like this brings awareness to other teenagers, just like us! It’s a learning experience for all. And a heck of a lot of fun!”
When you can combine life lessons and having fun, it shows that the overall effectiveness of the assignment was well thought out. Let’s hope that more teens take their heed and think twice before going down the same dangerous road that so many have already taken.
Congratulations to Christina and Anna for producing the following video along with friends, classmates, etc. – learn more here.