You and the World 2012
Hello, my name is Lauren Thomas. I am a freshman from Science Leadership Academy located in Philadelphia, PA. My english teacher, Ms. Dunn, asked the class and I, “Is there an issue in the world, country, or state that you would like to learn more about and act on?” There were plenty of ideas flying through my head on what to work on - gay marriage, animal cruelty, unemployment, teen driving or depression. I decided to choose teen driving because it seemed unique and looked as if nobody has researched this topic in past ninth-grade You and the World projects.
I chose teen driving because now that I am in high school, I will soon reach the age where driving becomes a big stepping stone into the adult community. Many adults don’t drive; however, if our communities continue growing and expanding then driving will have to be a need-to-know skill.
For the You and the World project I am going to be writing blog posts concerning my topic of choice - Teen Driving: Distractions. I am going to include statistics and visuals along with the different aspects of distractions while teenagers are behind the wheel.
For teen drivers, texting is a main issue. Texting while driving veers your attention from the road, causing accidents because you are not paying attention. Another distraction is talking on the phone. Talking on the phone while driving can cause accidents too because the teen is not focused on the road and the task of driving.
This topic could be confusing because children are raised with the idea of no texting or talking while driving, but their parents may be doing the exact thing that is “illegal”. Click here to see which states have laws on cell phone use, both texting and talking.
I know that my parents talk on the phone in the car. My mom would quickly call my dad to let him know she is almost home, or if she’s in traffic. I would call my dad when he’s driving home from work to let him know I got home safe. I think there are times you can’t avoid talking on the phone. What if your mom calls you when you’re driving? You may not answer and she’ll become super worried. Pull over and talk to her. But what if you can’t pull over? In my opinion, if you are a skilled driver and are not going super fast, then you could quickly inform your parent. However, if you use these as excuses for calling your friends about Friday night, then it’s wrong.
ABOVE : *Click image for full size* A chart showing that if teens got their license taken away they would give up cell phone usage. (source)
Regarding the above image, teens said that they would give up cell phone use if there were legal prohibitions against and various limits on cell phone usage. Also, teens said if they got an insurance discount, they would easily give up their cell phone. When surveyed, sixty-six percent of teens said their parents could influence them in giving up their phone, whereas forty-seven percent said their peers could influence them to give up their phone.
I found this website very informative. It helped me understand the dangers of driving while texting. The site has a great interactive driving course that included driving while texting and much more challenges. In future blog posts I will take this interactive course and include my results and facts. It is an interesting challenge that will help me with my research and blog postings.