Hey, we’ve all been there. Maybe you’re late to work and want to text your boss to let them know you’re on your way. Maybe you’re getting a series of texts from a loved one and you don’t want them to think you’re ignoring them. Or maybe you just got a great idea you want to tell a friend about before you forget. The urge to text and drive is real. But that doesn’t make it any less dangerous.
Texting while driving is a form of distracted driving, which the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) defines as “any activity that diverts attention from driving, including talking or texting on your phone, eating and drinking, talking to people in your vehicle, fiddling with the stereo, entertainment or navigation system — anything that takes your attention away from the task of safe driving.” Distracted driving can be deadly.
The statistics make it clear that distracted driving causes serious harm to communities and individuals. For example, in 2019, 3,142 fatal car crashes in America were attributed to distracted driving. A whopping 58% of all teen crashes are caused by distracted driving. And distracted driving doesn’t just affect people behind the wheel: 1 in 5 people killed by distracted drivers are not in motor vehicles, including pedestrians and cyclists.
If those numbers aren’t enough to convince you, it’s illegal to text and drive in many states, including Howl’s home state of New York. But more importantly, when you text and drive, you’re not just putting yourself in danger, legal or otherwise. You endanger the lives of those around you, including animals and children in your neighborhood.
Whether you’re on a busy highway or a quiet cul-de-sac, there’s no text so important that it can’t wait for you to pull over. Keep your eyes on the road, and your hands on the wheel at “10 and 2.”
That goes for social media and other communication platforms too, including Howl. We encourage Howl users to share any important information they find on the roads with their neighbors, such as accidents or road work, but please wait until you can do so safely.