Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Shock Video About Texting and Driving

In the good old days, a telephone was in your home, not in your car. drinking and driving was almost the only way a driver could be "impaired", aside from possibly a heart attack at the wheel. Later on, drugged drivers also became a real concern.

Now, it is possible to be a menace to other drivers and to be stone cold sober. Cell phones have become a major factor in many car crashes. Amazingly enough, people are even texting on their cell phones when operating a motor vehicle, engaging both one hand and their vision in matters other than what is on the road. People who would never think of drinking in a motor vehicle voluntarily impair themselves by focusing on a phone call or a text message.

Police in Gwent, Wales and Tredegar comprehensive, a local high school collaborated in making a harrowing film depicting an accident caused by texting and its emotional aftermath. The film, named "Cow" after its main character named Rachel Cowan was enhanced with computer technology and depicts a multiple car highway accident. The accident resulted when a young driver was distracted from the road by a texting conversation. The second by second progress of the crash is painfully vivid to anyone who has been in the middle of an accident in which you fear what the next split second will bring. The film, which is a half hour long is partially available on line. It focuses not only on the crash itself, but its emotional aftermath. The varied perspectives explored elicit vivid and visceral responses from viewers.

It is worthwhile looking at various forms of driving while impaired. Following are some notes of caution.

1)It should be obvious that driving while drunk or drugged is dangerous. Unfortunately, every year, people continue to do this. Some actually act insulted when you suggest that they shouldn't drive. They seem to resent the implication that they are mortal and vulnerable to alcoholic or chemical impairment.

2) Take a good look at your medication. Cough syrup, hay fever medication and other medications often carry a warning. These drugs can often be very powerful when used in combination, particularly with alcohol. Be aware of the dangers. Such medications may be respectable. But it does not remove the dangers.

3) Lack of sleep is as bad as driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. People die every year in accidents where the driver falls asleep. If you are on a long trip, stop for rest at intervals. Schedule as much as possible of your trip by day. Use the radio and coffee as aids in staying alert.

4) When you have a passenger, have them answer your cell phone if possible. If this is not possible, pull over and return your call or answer your text.

5) If you are in a bad mood, don't take it out on the road. Bad things can happen very quickly.

6) Maintain your brakes. Accidents can be caused by brakes that fail when you need them most. The consequences can be deadly.

7) If you are a pedestrian walking at night, wear clothing or a reflective strip that can be seen at night. Someone in dark clothing who is jaywalking can look like a shadow. Be aware of how you appear to drivers. Pedestrians who are careless can endanger themselves and drivers.

Reflexes are critical. Any kind of substance abuse lengthens the amount of time a driver is likely to take in responding to a situation on the road. A fraction of a second can mean the difference between life and death.

Both substance abuse and phone use lessen awareness and perception of the road. Even a handless cell phone can distract from awareness of what is on the road.Channel surfing on the radio can be a dangerous distraction.

No one wants the blood of innocent human beings on his or her hands. No one wants to be thought of as the person who tore a loved one away from their family. But a motor vehicle brings such terrifying possibilities well within the reach of decent people. There are very few people who are depraved drunken maniacs recklessly operating automobiles. But there are impairments and distractions that tempt almost anyone. It is wise to be aware of the many things that can turn a ride in a car into a nightmare.

So at the end of your long and tiring day, kick back and make a phone call. Have a drink. But make sure that the car is parked for the night. You're a good person. And you don't want the most memorable thing about your life to be that you took someone elses'.


I am presenting exerpts from the film "Cow." It is well worth sharing with someone you love. The links are below.

"Cow" exerpt 1

"Cow" exerpt 2

"Cow' Exerpt 3 Sphere: Related Content

No comments: