The Survey Solution
May awoke, dreading the day ahead. Every day brought tons of worries into her brain for her life and the lives of her loved ones. Nevertheless, she got ready and an hour later, climbed into the car with her mom, already afraid of her mother’s distracted driving. Her mom was always on business calls while driving which put her and everyone near her at risk. Just in the one morning, May had to remind her mom to stop three times. Luckily, May got to school without a scratch and left the car, running inside, seeing her friend Janice on the way. May was elated to see Janice since May needed her help in math. May asked Janice if she could tutor her and Janice suggested that they could study at her house. The idea terrified May, seeing as Janice would have to drive her across town. May wanted to say no, but she needed the help in math or she might fail the class. She reluctantly agreed, putting her life in the hands of another distracted driver. At four, they climbed into Janice’s car and pulled away. Janice immediately reached for her phone to text. May bit her lip and offered to text whoever it was for Janice, but Janice rejected the idea. Janice began drifting into oncoming traffic and May screamed. Janice quickly corrected her mistake and went back to her phone. After a treacherous ride, they arrived at Janice’s house. In a few minutes, they began the study session, which went much better than the commute. May understood everything after three hours and unfortunately, was ready to head home. When May told Janice they should go, Janice said that she forgot she wasn’t allowed to drive past dusk. May needed another ride. May sighed. She couldn’t walk home this far and her parents were still at work. “Just ask Reggie,” Janice said. Reggie was May’s brother and the last person she wanted to drive her anywhere. He used his phone, sang along loudly to the radio, and even fell asleep at the wheel. However, May had no other option. She called her brother and he arrived a half hour later. May was nervous and nauseous even before getting into the car, but she climbed in anyway. Thirty minutes later, they got home after several close calls as a result of Reggie’s bad driving. May left the car, thankful to be alive, and walked inside. May opened up her email to find an interesting message. It read: “Greetings May Jackson! We are emailing in regards to Reggie Jackson’s driving. Please fill out the anonymous survey below about Reggie’s driving. Your name and answers will not be shared, but will help to determine if Reggie is allowed to keep his license, must retake the driving test, or will have his license suspended. Please be truthful as this will protect Reggie, his passengers, and other drivers. Thank you.” May looked over the survey, which asked about if Reggie drives distracted, what he’s distracted with, the approximate number of close calls and collisions Reggie got into which he could’ve avoided had he not been distracted. The last thing on the survey was a line telling her to share the survey with Reggie’s other frequent passengers so that as much information as possible could be gathered about Reggie’s distracted driving habits. Finally, May could do something to keep not only herself safe, but others safe as well. For the first time since she realized the dangers of distracted driving, she could finally breathe.
The scenario given may be fictional, but many people do have similar experiences with distracted driving. The notion of having a survey sent to friends and family members of all drivers to understand their driving habits acts as an innovative way to make sure people do the right thing even when police are not around to stop them. The people who know their driving habits best and care the most about them are those closest to them. Who better to help keep them safe from their own habits? A survey in which frequent passengers of the driver in question can express their concerns gives those people a non-confrontational outlet and allow them to speak out to protect their loved ones while not actually having to suggest to their loved ones that they should change their driving habits. This gets dangerous drivers off the road or changing their habits, which makes streets safer for everyone on them.