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NBA Player Apologizes for High-Speed Distracted Driving Incident

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Fans of the Detroit Pistons already have enough to worry about, with their team languishing near the very bottom of the NBA standings a quarter of the way into the season.  Unfortunately, Andre Drummond, one of their bright young stars, made headlines for Snapchatting a photo of the instrument panel of his Mercedes over the weekend.  While driving on I-75.  At 96 miles per hour.

Major Cause for Concern

I’ve posted numerous blogs about the dangers of distracted driving.  Driving is a complicated and potentially hazardous activity that requires your full attention for your own safety and the safety of those around you.  Add to that excessive speed, and you have a tragedy waiting to happen.  Hundreds of thousands of people are injured every year in car crashes involving distracted drivers, and young drivers under the age of 20 are particularly (but NOT exclusively) at risk.

Is an Apology Enough?

To be fair, Drummond has taken responsibility for his mistake and vowed that it won’t happen again.  Still, impressionable young fans may be more likely to copy a celebrity brazenly flouting the law and acting in a careless manner.  Calling such dangerous behavior a “silly mistake” seems to trivialize it.  While Drummond is understandably eager to put the episode behind him, this moment is a key opportunity to educate people about the serious and potentially deadly consequences of distracted driving.