The dangers of texting and driving were highlighted by the Arrive Alive Tour at a recent event at Topeka West High School in Kansas. The distracted driving simulator was sponsored by Farm Bureau Financial Services agent Jeff Biggs. Besides distracted driving, the students also got to experience the dangers of drinking and driving and drugged driving.
As stated, Farm Bureau agent Jeff Biggs sponsored the Arrive Alive Tour for this visit. Why did he sponsor the event? He told The Topeka Capital-Journal there were three reasons. The first was that he is a graduate of Topeka West. Then as an agent, he often sees the damage that can be caused by distracted driving on a daily basis. The third reason was his brother survived a head-on crash a few years ago. Biggs said, “He lost the use of his left hand. The crash was caused by distracted driving.”
Texting and Driving Simulator
For the simulation, the Arrive Alive Tour brings in a full-size Jeep Patriot. They also use a high-tech simulator, impact video and other resources to educate participants about the dangers of texting and driving. While the participants are not actually getting on the road and texting, this simulation allows them to experience the potential consequences of distracted and drunk driving, but in a controlled environment.
It Happens All The Time
Texting while driving happens all the time, especially for teenagers. They don’t want to miss out on anything, so they feel a quick text is fine. That’s exactly was Elijah Canton, a senior at Topeka West, said, “Honestly, I text while driving sometimes. If I’m in a hurry, I’ll text to tell my mom that I’m on my way home. I see on other people’s social media that they do Snapchat and videos, but I don’t do that. I know I’m not safe texting while driving, but I feel like when I get a text I have to answer it.”
No FOMO Needed
If people have a fear of missing out, then they should really look at the stats. They will be missing out on a lot more if they get killed while driving distracted, which drivers under 20 years old have the highest proportion of distraction-related fatal crashes! Dustin Dick, principal at Topeka West, said, “I think teens will text and drive until something happens to them or someone close to them to make it more real. With this, they can see the dangers of it in a safe, simulated environment.”
The “until it happens to me” mentality needs to be stopped!