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Texting Law is Needed

Safe driving is no accident. It is because of responsible parents and teens, driver education/training, DMV licensing, good laws, and better law enforcement. And all of the above work for safety and help keep motorists from being recalled by their Maker.

Safety researchers say 80 percent of vehicle crashes are attributed to distractions. Such distractions are responsible for some 5,500 automobile fatalities annually, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and the problem of mobile phone use and texting and talking behind the wheel has become epidemic.

Practically all driver safety specialists agree texting is the major distraction causing crashes. The three main types of distractions are visual, taking your eyes off the road; manual, taking your hands off the wheel; and cognitive, taking your mind off what you are doing. While all distractions can endanger safety, texting is the most alarming because it involves all three types of distractions.

Sending or reading a text takes your eyes off the road for up to 4.6 seconds. At 55 mph, that's like driving the length of a football field!

Most lawmakers agree “in the multitude of counselors there is safety” (Proverbs 11:14; 24:6). May they listen to safety professionals and pass laws for better safety.

The June 2012 release by the Governors Highway Safety Association shows that many state lawmakers are listening. It was mentioned that 39 states, D.C., Guam and the Virgin Islands ban text messaging for all drivers. A texting bill is needed in South Carolina to build traffic bridges for young people (and others) to keep their blood off the highway.

A problem to overcome is distinguishing the difference between personal liberty and public safety. A person may feel he has the liberty to drive into an oncoming lane and crash, but we have laws to hinder such unsafe driving.

Texting causes unsafe driving. One's personal liberty should end where public safety begins and good laws are needed to limit liberty when it comes to public safety!

There is a maxim that states “justice is better when it prevents rather than punishes with severity.” William E. Gladstone said that “good laws make it easier to do right and harder to do wrong.”

A good law with tough enforcement can help to reduce deadly distracted driving behavior. As the seat belt law encourages more seat belt use while driving, a texting law will encourage less texting while driving. May our Senate leaders soon pass the texting bill like the House has done!

Joe Sabbadino