Photo by Andrea Cruse

A Lesson Learned

Photo by Andrea Cruse
Keep your eyes on the Road!

By Ariel Franklin

Lying to parents?  We all do it right?  One glance down at your phone while driving, what is the big deal?  It is not like a few seconds is going to kill you.  Or so I thought before being proven wrong was almost fatal.

After a long day of adventures with friends,  I came home at 12:00 am but still wanted to be out driving knowing it was way past my curfew. I begged my mom to let me go hang with a group at Buffalo Wild Wings down the street, but honestly that’s not where I was going. Because of the great kid I usually am, she let me go and just said to make sure I keep in contact.

As I left the house, I felt like I shouldn’t leave because I was really sleepy, felt a bit sick, and was lying about where I was going. As I went back in my head about what to do, I just could not accept that if I did not go, I would not be apart of something fun and so, I headed out.

While I drove, I looked down at my phone to send a very quick text to a friend to see if she was at the party.  I then remember suddenly feeling a huge object run into my left side of my body. My head banged against the steering wheel as if my head was a ball, and the steering wheel was a bat. My car did a fast 360 degree spin and was ran off of the road. I blacked out for at least 15 seconds and then woke up panicking. I was in so much shock. Was I just in an accident?  I was only a few minutes from home and I looked at my phone for only a few seconds.  How could it be?  Now I was a statistic.  Thankfully not a dead one.

I of course know not to drink and drive, but “texting while driving is 6 times more likely to cause an accident than driving drunk” (AAA).

Here are the facts.  Texting while driving is not harmless.  Even if we see our parents do it, we need to spread the truth:

“Approximately 660,000 drivers are attempting to use their phones

while behind the wheel of an automobile.

Nearly 330,000 injuries occur each year from accidents caused

by texting while driving.

11 teens die every day as a result of texting while driving.

94% of teen drivers acknowledge the dangers of texting and driving,

but 35% admitted to doing it anyway.

21% of teen drivers involved in fatal accidents were distracted by their cell phones” (AAA).

Since cell phones can do just about anything now, it has become second nature to pick it up at any time and that is not okay. Distracted driving, especially texting and driving is very dangerous and causes lots of pain for not only the driver but their families. Even if you feel like no harm will be done, it’s not true! While driving, you must think of other people’s lives as well. Is a text really worth a life whether it is your own life or someone else on the road? Don’t text and drive.  We hear it all the time.  I learned it the hard way and am so thankful that the accident was not much worse.   No message is that important that it can’t wait until it can be sent safely. I am alive to write this plea to you fellow teens, it is not worth it.  Put the phone away until you are not driving or you may not have a second chance like I did.

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