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MUST READ: This Post Could Save Your Life

er-signIt’s not often you come across a blog post that is so important—it should be bookmarked, shared, and emailed to just about everyone you know. Why? Because the information contained in this post could very well save your life—or the life of someone you love. It may be information you may have heard before, but it’s important to hear again, and again, and again, until the message truly sinks in.

Despite concerted efforts by automobile manufacturers, consumer safety groups, and celebrities, mobile phone usage continues to be the scourge of highway safety all over the world. In April, the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration aired a public service announcement vividly depicting the dangers of texting and driving. The video is a bit graphic, but it does send the message loud and clear. You can view the NHTSA videos here.

Now, Volkswagen is using technology to illustrate to Hong Kong moviegoers just how quickly texting and driving can change your life forever. Their video is a sobering reminder of how fast an accident can occur when you take your eyes off of the road.

For once, moviegoers were asked to leave their cellphones on in the theater. As the audience settles in, the image that comes to life on the screen is that of someone getting into their vehicle and starting the ignition. The next few seconds are a driver’s-eye view of the road from behind the steering wheel.

Unbeknownst to theater occupants, the room has been outfitted with a location-based broadcaster capable of sending a mass text to every phone simultaneously. As the car on the screen continues cruising along a scenic highway, an incoming text disturbs the tranquility. The driver looks down at his phone, and moviegoers check theirs, for the 4.6 seconds that, on average, it takes us to read a text, and suddenly everyone in the theater snaps back to attention as the car on the screen crashes into a tree, shattering the windshield.

What do you think that incoming text said? Regardless of how insignificant the message might have been, in 4.6 seconds it became life-altering for the person behind the wheel.

The Killer in Your Pocket

Cellphone usage is to blame for 1.6 million collisions annually, according to the National Safety Council. Our phones are with us all the time so checking them whenever-wherever- even behind the wheel, has become such a habit. A bad habit that is getting more and more of us killed or seriously injured every year.

Why do drivers continue to sneak a peek at their phone despite knowing the dangers? Apparently, we have conditioned ourselves to do so. We check the phone – we get a message which makes us happy, subsequently raising dopamine (feel good hormone) levels in our brain, literally compelling us to continually to check our phone.

Recondition Your Brain

Depending on your level of will power, there are several ways you can restrict yourself from checking your phone while behind the wheel:

  1. For those with no will power- remove your phone entirely from reach or sight – put it in the trunk if you have to.
  2. For those with some restraint- turn the phone off while in the car, or place it in the glove box for use with Bluetooth only.
  3. For the strong-minded – recondition yourself to stop before instinctively looking at the phone while driving. Begin consciously making the effort and eventually it will become a new, good habit.

If you are like many drivers, however, out of sight is out of mind. Get into the habit of not checking your phone while driving. You can turn on airplane mode so that the “pings and beeps” won’t alert you to incoming text messages and emails. Tell your friends, family, and coworkers that you don’t check your phone while driving, so that they understand when you are a little slow to respond. Plan to arrive safely at your destination a few minutes early so that you can check your messages and respond appropriately.

Contact Us

logoIf you or someone you love has been injured in an accident with a texting driver, you need a lawyer on your side from the start. For a free initial consultation with Fuicelli & Lee, PC, send us an e-mail or call (303) 355-7202. You pay nothing unless you receive a financial settlement or award. It is simply the mission of every Denver auto accident attorney on the Fuicelli & Lee team to provide the best service possible.

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