teen on phone

The message is being shouted across the media and in high-quality driver education courses: texting while driving is lethal. In many states, it's illegal. Drivers of any age are prohibited by California law from sending text messages at any time while operating a vehicle, and other states are passing similar legislation. But amazingly, thousands of people still text while driving, and these drivers are causing serious accidents.

It's often passengers or other drivers who die in crashes caused by texting. Rob Reynolds lost his 16-year-old daughter Cady Ann when a texting teen driver ran a red light and crashed into the side of Cady's car. Reynolds founded C.A.R. Alliance to educate teens and their parents about the dangers of distracted driving. He shares stories of accidents that make you wonder, "What were they thinking?"

Reynolds tells audiences about how his daughter died when the entire side of her car crushed the driver's seat. He talks about the Houston driver who dropped his cell phone and swerved off the road into a canal as he was trying to pick it up. The man and two adult friends escaped the submerged car but were unable to pull his five children out of the back seat. All of the children drowned. Reynolds also mentions Hollywood plastic surgeon Frank Ryan, who drove over a cliff while using his Twitter account.

Reynolds is one of a growing number of dedicated advocates for no texting while driving. The Brown family, who lost their daughter when she chose to text on the road and totaled her truck, were featured on Oprah's "No Phone Zone" episode. They educate families about distracted driving and encourage drivers to sign a pledge to stop texting and driving. Students say that hearing how many people have died makes them think that it's not such a good idea to try to text on the road.

Safe driving requires good judgment, visual acuity, and motor control. It's hard to bring those into play in a motor vehicle if your hands are off the wheel and your eyes are following the text instead of traffic. As Rob Reynolds tells his audiences, "Those messages will be in your phone ten minutes later when you get to where you're going."

If you're interested in getting a permit to drive and need to learn about driver safety, you can register for a complete online driver education course at http://onlinedriversed.com.