Steering in the right direction
The top two driving related problems teens face are driving under the influence and distracted driving. These two articles discuss this life threatening issues.
January 20, 2016
Photo Credit: Photo via Flickr under creative Common license
Make drinking and driving a thing of the past
While evaluating anything, it is easy to create a list of pros and cons. After weighing the importance of each pro and con, it should help making decisions easier. In 2015, there were a lot of ups and downs, as there are every year. There was a lot of new music, while some popular artists seem to have fallen off of the face of the earth. There were fashion trends and popular phrases that need to be left in 2015.
However, of all of the things that should be left in 2015, driving under the influence is the most important. In 2011 alone, 1.2 million people got arrested for driving under the influence. Every two minutes, a person is injured from a drunk driving incident. In 2013, over 10,000 people died in drunk driving crashes, while 290,000 were injured by drunk driving incidents. We should make drinking and driving a thing of the past. Leave it in 2015, because it’s not worth it. If a pros and cons list of drinking and driving was made and weighed, it would definitely not look balanced; and, while I realize that still may not make anyone think twice before getting behind the wheel while intoxicated, it’s worth a shot.
W = Weight (weight of importance is being weighed 0-50, 0 being not important at all, 50 being very important.)
|You get where you need to be (maybe)
W – 10
|You can crash and harm yourself, and anyone else on the road at the same time
W – 50
|You can crash and damage your car and other property
W – 30
|You can get pulled over, arrested, fined, and put in jail
W – 40
|4. If you do cause death , or harm to anyone, you have to live with the guilt
W – 50
After seeing the consequences– and that the only plus side can easily be achieved through other means, like Uber or public transportation– people will still continue to drink and drive. Before going out to drink, people should have their rides planned out. If you have a big friend group and you go out drinking every weekend, come up with a rotation of designated drivers. Another option is to sleepover wherever you plan to drink. I’m sure if you asked the host of the party, they would much rather you stay the night then put you at risk to get into a drunk driving accident. However, if none of those things are an option and it is too late to call anybody or do anything about it, it’s safer to just sleep in your car and drive home in the morning. Getting a ticket for sleeping in your car is much better than killing yourself, others, or injuring anybody, while also getting arrested for drinking and driving.
There is no excuse for drunk driving. Drinking and driving has always been a huge problem. Everyone needs to try and make it a thing of the past. Let’s leave it in 2015. Let’s start the new year with new, better habits. More importantly, let your friends and family know that you’re available to give them a lift when they are in need.
Photo Credit: photo via flickr under creative commons license
Eliminate the distractions behind the wheel
The first thing most people do when they get their license is drive around almost anywhere. It’s an exciting thing when you’re able to go wherever you want, and most of the time people want company in the car with them while they’re driving. Having other passengers in the vehicle isn’t a bad thing until music becomes a topic, which means the person driving– as well as the person in the second seat– begin to mess with the radio.
Distracted driving is more of an issue for teen drivers because they’re inexperienced. They aren’t likely to be as responsible as they should be. It’s a fact that teen drivers with other passengers are more likely to be distracted by what’s going on inside the car before an actual car crash. Males that drive with their friends are approximately six times more likely to demonstrate illegal activity, and also tend to drive with more aggression before getting into an accident, as opposed to when they’re driving alone. Females are less likely to drive aggressively, whether or not they have other people in the car.
90 percent of teens don’t realize that the behavior of passengers distracts the driver from focusing on the road. With such a high percentage, there should be rules and guidelines that are strongly forced upon new drivers to ensure that everyone on the road will be safe.
There shouldn’t be any other passengers for the first six months after receiving your driver’s license, and no more than 1 other passenger for the second six months of driving. This rule should be enforced among all teen drivers. It’s been proven that teens that follow guidelines such as this one are less likely to get into accidents and are generally more well behaved behind the wheel. Aside from music, there are many other distractions to face while driving, such as:
Setting up your GPS
It’s important to do all of these things before getting behind the wheel to ensure that everyone inside the vehicle, including yourself, reaches the destination safely. Nothing is more valuable than a life, which can be taken very easily over something as small as looking in the other direction for a second, or eating a quick snack, so remember to always be focused on the road and avoid distractions.