Cell phones and drunk driving
I’ve written before about how drunk driving impacts the PICU. Now a recent tragedy in Texas reminds us that talking on a cell phone while driving can be just as bad. Five children died as a result. Five children.
It’s been known for some time that using a cell phone while driving impairs your reflexes. A study from the University of Utah used a driving simulator to test reaction times of drivers using a cell phone, both against the ear and in so-called “hands free” mode. The results showed that using a cell phone was the equivalent of being legally drunk. Although text-messaging wasn’t studied, I’m sure that has an even worse effect on driving skills.
I am astonished that many parents who would never drive their children around after drinking alcohol think nothing of chatting on the cell phone constantly while their kids are in the car. It appears that this particular driver was both drunk and using a cell phone, compounding the problem.