Texting and driving is a prevalent issue across the United States, and the world. As more and more people are choosing to text while they drive, the occurrence of accidents is also increasing. In fact, according to Distraction.Gov, 10% of young drivers involved in accidents were distracted at the time.
In response to the huge increase in texting related accidents, many cell phone service providers have launched programs to discourage texting while driving.
Why Are Campaigns Against Texting and Driving Necessary?
As already discussed, texting and driving is dangerous, and the distraction of texts leads to new accidents and on-the-road dangers every day. It is difficult to identify the exact cause of every accident, however, distracted driving causes a huge percentage of the accidents in this country every year. Texting while driving makes up a huge portion of this number.
Distracted driving is quickly becoming an epidemic. Texting while driving is largely responsible for this. And, without serious interventions, this compulsion to text while driving will only increase.
Who Are the Programs Targeted Towards?
Although anyone with a driver’s license and a cell phone could potentially text while driving, young adults (especially those between 16 and 20), are most likely to participate in this distracted driving behavior. Because this range of drivers is so narrow, most anti texting campaigns are targeted at youth in this age group.
How do the Anti-Texting Programs Work?
Most cell phone companies today are developing their own methods for combatting the texting and driving epidemic. While every campaign is unique to the company backing it, there are a few things that each campaign focuses on:
· Information. Every campaign against texting and driving requires a foundation of information. Most companies start their campaigns by giving teens access to information on the dangers of texting and driving. This information helps young adults to make more educated decisions when they drive.
·Commitment. Many programs ask teens to commit to avoiding texting and driving. After making a commitment, young people are much more likely to think twice before they begin texting on the road.
·Advocacy. The most important and useful movements encourage their participants to advocate for the cause, and the campaigns against texting and driving are no different. These programs encourage young people not only to stop texting and driving themselves, but also to remind others to stop distracted driving behaviors as well.
·Apps. With new technology available at our finger tips, cell phone companies are providing access to apps that encourage safe driving and make texting and driving much more difficult.
These are the main techniques cell phone providers are using to discourage texting and driving, but each company also has their own methods to solve the problem. AT&T, for example has a documentary on the dangers of texting and driving, and allows access to simulators on their site where texting and driving can be experienced without the dangers of being on a real road.
Apps to Prevent Texting and Driving
Although apps were briefly mentioned in the earlier section, there is much more to be said. Many apps are available for just about every model of smart phone to help decrease the occurrence of texting and driving.
Some of the best apps for texting and driving include
1. TxtBlocker for BlackBerry and Android, blocks text and voice messaging in moving vehicles, also sends an automatic “driving” message to anyone who contacts the driver.
2. Textecution for Android, automatically disables texting and talking function when it detects speeds over 10MPH.
3. SafeTexting is an app that reminds users to disable texting when they are driving, and is available for most mobile devices.
The Success of Anti-text while Driving Campaigns
Although these programs are certainly out there, one has to ask if the programs are working. And, according to USA Today, studies have found that these campaigns are decreasing the occurrence of texting while driving by a substantial amount.
Texting while driving is a dangerous decision, and with the help of campaigns like these, we can make the decision to avoid texting while driving a bit simpler. Find a campaign against texting with your provider today and start driving safer.