Experimental trial to decrease collisions involving phone usage

Michael M

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Visual evidence to inform and remind students about the dangers of driving while using their phones would be useful to see daily. In high schools, many teens who have vehicles rush out the doors to get in their vehicles to drive out of campus for lunch or to go home. While walking to their vehicles they are not exposed to signs that remind them to stop texting while driving or get off their phones when driving. In addition buying signs is expensive, for example it costs approximately $209.28 for ten “Engineer Grade Reflective” signs that are the cheapest option at TrafficSigns.com. This is a cost some schools may not be willing to pay and this is where school funding sources need to step in. To target high schoolers as well as college students, it would be useful for “no texting while driving” and informative signs with collision statistics to be placed at strategic locations. These locations would be at exits such as next to doors leading to parking lots and on the walls so students have visuals at eye level that thay may come across on a daily basis. If these signs are not at eye level or not seen daily, it is easy to forget. Another area to place signs would be in the parking lots on lamp posts, underneath STOP signs and on posts that lead into the public road. This allows for drivers to see signs again while in a line of cars waiting to leave the parking lot and once more before they enter the public road. To conduct an evidence based test trial, a school would need to purchase signs and make a survey for students to take at the end of a quarter. A good hypothesis would state, if ‘no texting while driving signs’ are placed at strategic locations, then more students will not text and drive due to signs being a daily reminder. This is a test that can be done to prove informative/reminder signs do work when placed at eye level and in multiple locations that follow students from the hallways, to their vehicles in the parking lot and before they enter the road. This experiment may be useful for student researchers and school districts to conduct to firmly address the problem of teens texting while driving. If this is done properly, districts in conjunction with the city municipalty may be able to attain funds to equip each high school and college with proper signs. The preliminary experiment could construct the design as follows: place signs inside the school near the exit doors of one parking lot and place signs in the parking lot areas (on lamp poles/with stop signs/on poles) of the other parking lot, and have students who drive take a survey that focuses on three main questions. Those main questions would be; 1) How often do you see/read the “do not text while driving” signs? 2) Have you stopped texting while driving? 3) Would seeing signs in the parking lot and near the exits be helpful reminders?. I hope this is a design that may be acted upon by myself or pro active students interested in public service. Upon receiving new technology it is up to us to use them responsibly and at proper times. Using devices or gadgets require attention to operate just as driving requires attention. Driving is a privilege that must be checked and a skill that needs full attention to do so the driver as well as others are kept safe. This piece is from a scientific perspective that may aid in gathering statistical evidence.


Description

I am pursuing a B.S in Biological Sciences at the University of Alaska Anchorage so I may continue on to medical school to become a medical oncologist. I started out doing cancer research at the age of 16, looking at gastric cancer pathogenesis caused by Helicobacter pylori and analyzing patient data for multiple primary cancers. This is my first year at UAA and I researching how to extract rare earth elements from Alaska coal with microbes. In Anchorage, Alaska, most of the year there is ice and snow for spring, late fall and winter so driving is more dangerous especially if teens/adults are texting while driving. I do encourage signs to be posted and would like to see students get involved with maintaining as well as making their schools a better place. In my junior year I served as the president for BCA program helping lead my chapter. My senior year I made a Smoothie Club where I informed students of how healthy food can help the body and we blended together. I also helped organize a Cougar Talks series where I got hard working students to share their advice/success tips for pursuing excellence in academics and sports; we made it to the local news twice. This scholarship would go towards my $1,200 final payment for this spring semester. Thank you for your time and participation with this program.