Fess up – are you still using your mobile phone while driving?

7 Dec

iphonepic

It’s tempting, isn’t it? You’re at a red light. A message has come through on your phone, or an email, or a Facebook update. A quick look won’t hurt, right? Has your husband remembered to get dinner started? If you send him a quick text now, it’ll been half-done by the time you get home. Or you might check out the weather website, to check if it is going to rain tomorrow. You’ll be quick.

Last week new laws regarding mobile phone use while driving were introduced in New South Wales. You are no longer allowed to even touch your phone while driving. It needs to be in a cradle and you can use it completely hands-free, but don’t touch it. Not even for a second. It’s all about voice activation now. And it’s for your own good. They’re not trying to ruin your social life.

More than fifty drivers are being booked each day since the new laws have been introduced. We just can’t stop using our phones while on the road. 443 motorists were booked in the first eight days alone, since the November 1 introduction of the new laws.

If you’re busted you’ll cop 3 demerit points and a $298 fine.

My friends and family know I’m a stickler for what many call ‘distracted driving’. Distracted driving is thought to cause more accidents than speeding. It just takes the smallest glance off the road, the slightest over-steer or under-steer, forgetting to indicate to let cars behind you know what you are doing or clipping a car on a fast road to cause chaos.

It’s just a quick text message, right? Or you’ll put it on speaker, once you find their number under your Contacts list?

Meantime you’ve ploughed into a family travelling in the opposite direction, or a truck, or a power pole.

Don’t underestimate the danger of using your phone while driving. If you have to, put it in your handbag and put your handbag on the back seat out of reach or even in the boot. If you know it’s a temptation, remove the temptation. Then turn the radio up and enjoy the music on your favourite station or the vitriol on talkback as you make your way home, safely, fully aware of your surroundings, with your eyes never ever ever leaving the road, for any reason.

We often forget that cars are hurtling pieces of metal and when these two pieces of hurtling metal crash into each other or even clip each other and spin-out, the consequences for us are severe.

My friend was pulled over for using her phone just a couple of days ago and said the police officer gave her the biggest lecture.

“Why didn’t you use your cradle,” I asked. I know she has one.

“I was having trouble hearing you,” she said.

“Oh God, just call me when you get home,” I said.

“I will. I just wanted to tell you something.”

Well, you can’t talk if you’re dead, I felt like saying.

Phones and driving just don’t mix.

30 Responses to “Fess up – are you still using your mobile phone while driving?”

  1. Cathy December 9, 2012 at 1:41 pm #

    So very true! Packed to the Rafters had a popular plot line a couple of seasons ago that saw one of its most popular characters travelling through a stop sign and being killed after a quick glance at her phone. It got a lot of attention at the time but then people got complacent again. I’m one of those people that needs to remove temptation because if I’m stopped at traffic lights, I still compulsively pick up the phone!
    P.S. I found your blog 🙂 Met you last night at the Big Bash cricket event.

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  2. Jo December 11, 2012 at 5:17 am #

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    • Luisa Munoz December 17, 2012 at 8:06 am #

      I’m one of those drivers where I’m scared to do anything that my cause me to be fined or pulled over. I never have an alcoholic drink when I drive, always drive below the speed limit and phones??? it all just has to wait. I’m always frightened when I jump onto facebook and see people doing selfies whilst driving or status updates whilst on the road. Scares me to death that many of these drivers are out on the road when I am out with kidlets!

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