How to stop Texting and Driving Permanently

Julian B

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I believe the best way to solve a problem is to get to the root of it and address the problem from there. The undaunted march of technology is the greatest enabler for people to text and drive. From their connections to social media, to internet blogging, teens everywhere are getting in on what they perceive to be the future of connectivity to their surroundings. However, these things take away that same awareness of their surroundings the more captivating the new apps and new games get. It would seem like the most plausible solution to this would be to take these things away from the general public in order to protect them, however this is not the case. To take away something such as a phone or Ipad from the general public would not only cause widespread distress but also isolate these individuals from any assistance or help they would need in case of an emergency situation. However, the best thing to do is to use technology to fix this problem. Because of this reason, I propose the following two solutions for permanently ending texting and driving. 1. For the past 8 years, companies such as google have been working on getting rid of the need for the human element in driving altogether. The most promising and successful of these efforts has been achieved in the form of the WAYMO by google. The WAYMO consists of self-driving technology installed to the roof of any semi-recent or modern vehicle that will allow it to make informed decisions and drive the roads as if it were a human being behind the wheel, except without any of the errors involved. According to legislation from 2017 by the NCSL (National Conference of State Legislature), at least 33 states have passed legislation regarding the use of driverless cars. This number is steady increasing and we could see the entire country using these vehicles very soon. The company Google owns the WAYMO technology currently, and expects to release it to the public by 2020. Fortune.com says that by 2040, at least 95% of cars made by then will be driverless. 2. The cheapest solution to texting and driving could already be here. Several phone companies, such as Apple and Samsung have leapt years into the future with their impressive hands-free messages and calls. This has been in development for years, and with the release of the latest IOS updates, is finally a reality to consumers, albeit with a few peripherals to increase convenience. If congress could pass a bill stating that all new vehicles from this point forward must have a semblance of this technology installed, it would be a huge step towards stopping texting and driving permanently. We as taxpayers would take a hit in the short term to pay for this , of course, however we’d all be safer for it. Car accidents caused by texting and driving would be almost nonexistent in America if this were the case. With at least one of these two countermeasures in place, we can stop texting and driving for good and make our country a safer place because of it. So let’s work together to stop this pandemic so America can continue to be a safe place to live !


Description

This is just a few ideas I came up with after researching the topic of how to make our roads safer for each other and for our children. I hope this causes you to think about the future, and these ideas will help shape it into something beneficial for us all. Please consider me for this scholarship and remember, technology, if directed the right way, is not something to be feared, but welcomed.