Cell Phones, Coffee Cups & Automobiles


About two weeks ago I was forced to crash my bike in order to avoid being hit by a car. As a person who bike commutes at least four days a week I usually pay keen attention to what the traffic surrounding me is doing. So I would like to tell you I was quite surprised to be confronted by a car travelling close to 50 miles per hour with the driver holding a cup of coffee in one hand and texting on her cell phone with the other. Again, I would like to tell you I was surprised, but I was actually not surprised at all. I see this far too often every day. So as I was sitting in the grass getting ready to pick my bike back up, I noticed that the driver had stopped and rolled down her window. She called out to me, "Are You OK?" to which I replied "Yeah, you didn't spill your coffee did you?" "No" she replied then she drove off. NICE!

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So I have been thinking about the incident since and it dawned on me that this is a fairly new problem. As a guy in his mid-forties, I vividly remember a time when there were no cell phones. It also is clear that most GPS systems don't let you make changes when the vehicle is in motion - why can't AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, etc. set up the phones so they are disabled from Texting when a vehicle is in motion? Is there really anything so important that it should distract drivers from the task at hand (operating a motor vehicle)?

If whatever a driver is doing pulls both hands off the steering wheel of car, perhaps it is time to stop driving! As a bike commuter I will do all I can to stay out of the way of traffic, why can't drivers commit to doing the same? I can tell you from first-hand experience, Cell Phones, Coffee Cups & Automobiles are a deadly combination when mixed together.
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