by Alexandria Echo Press
September 25, 2010 at 5:50 am in Alexandria Echo Press
Speaking at the second annual Distracted Driving Summit in Washington, D.C., U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar Tuesday highlighted the need to stop drivers from texting while driving. Continue Reading
Tags: Amy Klobuchar, cell, distracted, driving, phone, Safety, Summit, Transportation 6 Comments »
I wholeheartedly agree that something needs to be done to stop all the distracted driving, especially texting while driving. A driver who chooses to text while operating a motor vehicle takes his or her eyes off the road for several seconds at a time. Anything can happen in that time. It is irresponsible and unsafe and should be illegal. With all the things that can happen while traveling on the roadway at speeds in excess of 55 mph, including curves in the road, bicyclists, runners, deer, other cars, crossing the center line, etc… there is no reason why texting should be allowed. Unfortunately, since it’s so hard to enforce, it takes the driver to have the integrity to be responsible and to make sure he or she does not text or otherwise allow his or herself to be distracted while operating a motor vehicle. And, it is incumbent upon parents to enforce this with their teen drivers.
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Just why is this texting so popular, anyway? Seems pretty retro to me. I’d place it somewhere between telegraph and telephone. About the only difference I can see is that you don’t have to know Morse code.
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ya know … I can see the draw. It’s not for me personally. I’ve texted, but am by no means a person who does it a lot. In fact, I don’t think I’ve sent a text for over a month. It works well for parents and kids and for teens with friends. You’re just having a quick conversation with friends without having to talk with them … no awkward silence, no need to hold a long conversation, just short comments. Kind of like when people would pass notes in class or have a running notebook between friends that they passed to eachother between classes. Like it or not, it is part of everyday life for a very large number of young people and is the preferred mode of communication, much more than talking on the phone. Face it … we’re old.
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I too once couldn’t understand the thrill of texting. Why type a message when you could verbally communicate it? I would have never dreamed I would find texting to be convenient but after finally giving in and adding the feature to our phone contract, I find there are some advantages.
* When all you need to do is send a quick two to four word message, it’s actually faster than calling, waiting for an answer, saying what you want to say, and hang up.
* Because a text message is usually set up with less obtrusive ring tones, receiving a text message is less disturbing to those around you than a ringing telephone therefore you can sen someone a message without disturbing them. You might here a momentary beep or tone and that’s it. You are aware of the message arriving but you’re not disturbing those around you. How many of us will interrupt a conversation, no matter how important, to answer a ringing phone? It’s too annoying to let it ring so we answer it. Texting takes this out of the picture.
* This is the biggie for me. I can create a text message and click send and I don’t even have to be in a service area. It is placed in my outbox until I regain service and then it gets sent. Same is true on the other end. The intended target does not have to be in a service area. The message is delivered as soon as they regain service. I can’t leave someone a voicemail message if both of us are not in service because I must be able to ring the other person’s phone in order to leave the message so we both must have service. At the very least, I must have service in order to leave a voicemail message.
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Regarding the issue of texting while driving and other distracted driving habits. How many of us realize that listening to a radio or talking to other passengers are forms of inattentive driving? How about digging for that fovorite CD or Cassette tape (for those of us a little older)? How attentive is that? How about smoking while driving? How about putting on make-up? How about scolding the kids or trying to calm an anxious infant?
Texting and talking on the phone are only a couple of many forms of this problem. The real problem is that I believe it is already illegal to drive inattentively. Don’t know the statutes at the moment but maybe somebody does. In any case, how does law enforcement effectively enforce these kinds of laws? In the end it comes down to the level of responsibility of the drivers on the road.
More laws aren’t the answer. Texting laws do nothing to prevent crashes. http://www.startribune.com/local/103947493.html?elr=KArks:DCiUHc3E7_V_nDaycUiacyKUUr
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