You open your eyes and realize you can’t breathe. Something is suffocating you. You push your arms out in front of you and realize your airbag has been deployed. You hear loud sirens, a woman screaming out a name. You’re in a daze and don’t know what’s happening. You’re struggling to get out of the front seat. The seat belt is stuck. As you’re struggling with that, you look up and notice the sight in front of you. The woman screaming? She’s crying. There’s a body on the ground next to her. The paramedics are swarming but it doesn’t seem to be doing much. She’s still hysterical. Is that person dead? Was it your fault? You can’t remember what happened before the crash. You’re racking your brains trying to remember when you hear your phone ringing. It’s unlocked, open to a message from your best friend with a half-written response. A sudden rush of guilt rushes over you as you’re being pulled from the car. Muffled voices are all around you but your heart is pounding in your ears. You caused this. You knew you shouldn’t have looked at your phone and now a person is dead. You knew your mother had told you it’s always best to leave your phone on silent when driving. You knew this. Now a person is dead because you couldn’t wait to answer a message. What will she think of you? How will she be able to look at you after this? How will others look at her once they see your picture in the newspaper? You’ve not only ruined your life, but you’ve destroyed the lives of the people that will hurt from this.
This writing puts you in the place of the driver that impacted the lives of others. You don’t get to turn back the clock once you’ve put your self on the road with the distraction of your phone. We can give as many classes and make as many laws as possible but it isn’t enough to change the way people think about texting and driving. We need to implicate an app of people’s phones that block the driver from completely using their phone until they get out of the car. No messages, no calls, no distractions.