Think about it, are text messages worth risking your life or the lives of others? We all know the answer, yet all around us people are driving while distracted. This is despite the fact that we are all well aware that car accidents and tragedies are occurring daily on our roads in Suffolk County. Many of us may say that we don't text and drive, so we are not part of the problem. However, distracted driving involves more than just texting. Distracted driving is engaging in any activity that takes our attention away from the task of driving for any period of time, and it is causing countless serious car accidents on Long Island.

In 2012, over 3,000 people were killed in car accidents caused by distracted driving, and over 400,000 people were injured. This equates to about 9 people killed every day, and over 1,000 people injured each day. At any given time in our country, over 650,000 drivers are using their cell phones or other electronics. The simple act of reaching for our phones, dialing, or texting increases our chances of having a car accident in Suffolk County by 3 times. Just sending or receiving a text message takes our eyes off the road for an estimated 4.6 seconds...which is the same as driving the length of an entire football field at 55mph, blind !

As adults, we can't say that we are more experienced drivers, so we can get away with it, or do it safely, and then tell our kids not to do it. It doesn't work that way. If our kids see us do it once or twice, then to them, they can do it too. That's how us humans work, we learn by example pure and simple, and if you think otherwise you are fooling yourself and putting your kids at risk as well. Here is a sobering fact, 21% of fatal car accidents involve the use of cell phones in drivers aged 15-19. Yet, 10% of parents, and 20% of teens admit to having extended multi-message text conversations while driving.

Now that we know the facts, what are we going to do about it? Are we willing to help make our roads in Suffolk County safer, with fewer life altering car accidents? If so, let's all take the pledge along with our younger drivers by clicking here