On Monday, April 22, Arizona Governor Doug Ducey signed a bill which made it illegal to talk or text on hand-held devices while driving in the state of Arizona. This bill had been discussed for several months, and there seems to be almost unanimous support of this bill across the state. Many people have said that this bill is a long time coming, and, quite frankly, I couldn't agree more.
Texting and driving should be illegal in every state.
As of right now, texting and driving is illegal in only thirty-eight states. There are twelve more states that need to adopt these laws. According to one statistic, about 390,000 injuries are caused by accidents when a driver was texting or talking on the phone while driving. When a person looks down at their phone to answer a text, skip a song on their playlist, or even to glance at their social media updates, they usually take their eyes off the road for five seconds. In those five seconds, if the driver is going 55 miles an hour, the driver will travel the length of a football field. If a person is texting while driving, they are six times more likely to cause an accident than they would be if they were driving drunk. Yes, you read that right.
These accidents and statistics have proven time and time again that texting while driving is incredibly dangerous. Why hasn't every state made texting and driving illegal?
When I first learned how to drive, my mom told me that every time I got behind the wheel of the car, I was in control of a deadly weapon. Cars are incredibly powerful machines and are not to be underestimated. People need to take this responsibility very seriously and should always put their safety first as they drive.
Whenever someone drives, they are putting their own lives (and possibly other people's lives) in their own hands. Looking to check their phone for a text that they could easily look at after they aren't driving simply isn't worth it. There are so many more important things in life that are worth so much more than checking a text right at the moment.
Every person driving out on the highway has a life worth living for. They all have families, jobs, hobbies, favorite TV shows, little things that make them laugh. I'm sure you have all those things, too. Why would anyone want to throw that away by texting and driving? I understand that making texting and driving illegal in every state wouldn't erase the problem completely. But, it would discourage it and, hopefully, encourage people to take their safety more seriously.
This should honestly be an issue that concerns everybody. These laws will definitely make the highways safer and help to raise awareness for other people. Arizona is definitely taking a step in the right direction here, as are 37 other states. Hopefully, the other states will pick up on this policy, and the roads will start being safer for everyone.