Monthly Archives: November 2014

Let’s Work Together To End Senseless Tragedies Caused by Distracted/Impaired Driving

Before & After Photos

I recently made some comments on a facebook post (by a radio show host) about proposed Texas legislation to ban texting while driving. I was frustrated with some comments made by others that they didn’t want this curb on personal freedom and that laws were not effective anyway. The following is an edited version of my “final” comment on that post:

Here is a before and after picture of our two girls in our car.  Actually, the before photo was from less than a year before our truck crash–when we were stopped on the highway due to a traffic fatality ahead of us. The after photo shows the result of a truck driver who was apparently distracted or “impaired”–abruptly ending two lives.

The point is that this is not a matter of personal right/freedoms being violated. This is a matter of personal choices needing to bear consequences when they result in death or injury for others (or themselves). Distracted/impaired driving of any kind needs to be outlawed–for the benefit & protection of those who are its innocent victims.

Enforcement & justice must follow. Raising awareness is essential–including acknowledgement of the extent of the problem and our own culpability and vulnerability. Research is also needed in order to find innovative technologies or means to curb the behavior which is sometimes addictive. And please do not forget the impact that this problem has on the lives of those who are responsible for someone else’s death.

The inadequacies of any solution to the widespread problem of distracted/impaired driving should not stop us from trying to put an end to these senseless & preventable crashes, which are not “accidents” but the result of personal choices/behaviors. The answer is most certainly not to put our head in the sand or discourage attempts to address this life & death matter but to work together to end such tragedies–one at a time.

Find out the current laws on texting & cell phone use in your state:

Watch & share this Texting While Driving Video:

Boston Makes Progress With Prevention of Truck Side Underride

Boston has taken some important steps  to improve safety on their streets by implementing vehicle-based safety measures, including side guards, for certain municipal commercial vehicles:

In his letter to Boston City Council, Mayor Walsh stated that the ordinance establishes requirements for protection equipment to be installed on vehicles contracted by the City of Boston, to be constructed and/or equipped as to offer effective protection to unprotected road users against the risk of falling under the sides of the vehicle and being caught under the wheels.

“I am pleased that this life-saving measure, a first in the nation, is moving forward as a result of the Volpe-Boston partnership over the past two years,” said Dr. Epstein. “Side guards, blind spot mirrors, sensors, and other truck technologies are all important means to prevent or mitigate deadly crashes with the pedestrians and bicyclists who must share the road with these massive vehicles. I believe that vehicle-based safety is becoming a key strategy for cities to reach their goals of reducing or eliminating traffic fatalities.”