We have 4 drivers in our family, including 2 teen drivers, one with a permit. Learning to drive when I was teen was difficult and dangerous enough and the only distractions were the radio dial, eating and friends in the car. Now you add cell phones and other electronics into the mix and driving is that much more dangerous. My family is making the choice to #DecideToDrive without distractions.
From the day each of my daughters got their driving permits, the rule has been that cell phones must be in the purse and sitting on the back seat of the car. Under no circumstances are they allowed to use their cell phone while driving. They may not use it at a stop light. They may not pull off to the side of the road to use the cell phone. They are allowed to pull into a parking lot, turn off the car and then pull out the cell phone and it must be put back away before they can start the car again.
It amazes me how many times I’ve seen adult drivers using their cell phone while driving. You can usually tell that the driver is distracted before you even get close enough to see that they’re talking on the phone. I’ve sat at lights waiting for the distracted driver with their head down texting or checking their phone to notice that the light has changed to green. Usually another driver will honk, but then the distracted driver steps on the gas guiltily before even looking up from the phone and assessing the situation. I’ve taught my daughters that they have to make sure they’re not distracted while they’re driving because they have to drive their car and they have to drive for those distracted drivers on the road, too.
We’ve stressed in our family that the driver must have hands on the wheel and eyes on driving. I’m confident that my daughters are driving responsibly. Just last week I needed to get a hold of my oldest and called her on her cell. She didn’t get back to me for 10 minutes until she had parked and they checked her phone (good job, S.!) But I worry about all those other drivers on the road who are driving while distracted. My family is precious to me and I want to keep them safe.
The Decide To Drive campaign is raising awareness that distracted driving is no accident, it’s a choice – a choice that can be avoided. Both the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and the Auto Alliance have joined together with #DecideToDrive and call on all citizens to take back the road. At the Decide to Drive website you can access information and resources to download that will educate you and the other drivers in your family on the importance of deciding to drive. Please join my family and decide to drive without distractions today and every day.
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.
More Parenting Tips