The Color of Life

Marissa K

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Sunshine, beaches, billboards and movie stars, I come from the land of distracted driving, Los Angeles, California. I learned to drive here which was not easy for a girl to do, but I had an expert teacher, my dad. So what makes him an expert? He was an emergency medical driver for 10 years in downtown Los Angeles, driving over 1 million miles, but most amazing of all, no accidents in all that time! I asked him how he managed to do this and he told me, he said, “I watch other drivers very closely and I follow the same safety rules of the road every single day, regardless. There were too many reminders not to do this.” He always watched out for other drivers because he knew how people get distracted or create a distraction and with younger age those distractions happen more easily. With my dad’s road knowledge in mind and his stories of young people who never made it home due to speed or distraction, I reversed the problem to its very beginning to come up with a possible solution. So what do I mean by very beginning? Let me explain. We are all required to take a driver’s training course and pass. We are all required to obtain a driver’s license, but after that point our freedom of choice comes in. Here is where problem starts. What I mean by that is we can go out and buy any kind of car we want to from the practical to the insane, this is our first distraction and greatest. Others may argue that a cell phone is our greatest distraction but it’s only one tool of in a long list of many. It’s the vehicle that’s the culprit. What if young drivers under the age of 21 were all required to drive vehicles that were similar? At first I had thought of a universal type vehicle for all to drive but understand this would be impossible. Then it came to me, a universal paint color. A universal paint color for drivers under 21 would solve many problems. It would alert you to the age of the driver. It would be easily identifiable making the under 21 driver of the vehicle more aware and cautious. It would alert police to look twice at that vehicle to make sure they weren’t using a cell phone or otherwise driving distracted. Other more experienced drivers on the road would give the young driver more room to navigate their vehicle and knowingly allow room for driving mistakes. Imagine parents or guardians seeing that paint color on the news, what would they immediately tell their young driver? What would your parents tell you? I believe the years the younger driver would gain on the road by driving more cautiously being seen by all, would benefit all.