April is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month, and all across the country safety advocates are spreading the message of safe driving habits to anyone who will listen. The movement includes about 850 attorneys from all 50 states, including me and the lawyers in my office. Our goal is simple: to educate people about the dangers of distracted driving and to highlight simple solutions for safety. And although many people jump to the conclusion that distracted driving is synonymous with teens texting behind the wheel, the problem is much, much larger than that.
Motorists, inexperienced and experienced alike, can become distracted in any number of ways. Manual distraction, visual distraction, and cognitive distraction can be caused by fiddling with your cell phone, changing the radio station, thinking about work, or eating a burger. It’s scary how common distractions have become, and how fatal they can be.
There is some good news, however. By committing to 12 simple steps, you can help make our roads safer and become a solid role model for people observing your behaviors:
- I will drive without texting.
- I will drive without making or receiving calls or texts.
- I will call or text before I start driving, to let parents or friends know when I’ll arrive.
- When I am alone, I will turn my cell phone off before I start to drive.
- I will pull over to safe location before making or receiving calls or text messages.
- I will deputize my passenger to make or receive calls and texts while I am driving.
- I will wait until I have finished driving to eat.
- I will until I am finished driving to swap CDs or scroll through my iPod or iPhone (or similar device) to change music selections.
- I will apply makeup before I start to drive, or wait until I am finished to reach for objects in the back seat.
- I will wait to text or call others until they have finished driving.
- I will ask my driver to drive more safely when I am a passenger in their car.
- I will be a driver who cares about the safety of others and is not selfish
By employing some courtesy and common sense, we can save thousands of lives prevent hundreds of thousands of injuries every year. Are you willing to join me in this effort?
recently named in the 2009 edition of Best Lawyer's In America, David Mittleman has been representing seriously injured people since 1985. A partner with Church Wyble PC—a division of Grewal Law PLLC—Mr. Mittleman and his partners focus on medical malpractice, wrongful death, car accidents, slip and falls, nursing home injury, pharmacy/pharmacist negligence and disability claims.