Staying Safe in Growing Traffic
Has anyone else noticed that the traffic here in San Angelo has grown by 693% (over-exaggerated statistic) in the last few years? Every day it seems to get worse and worse. Drivers are becoming more distracted with cell phones, putting on their makeup and trying to finish that last sip of coffee before pulling into the convenience store for a refill. According to the AAA Foundation, “one third of Americans have had a friend or relative seriously injured or killed in a traffic crash.” I don’t know the numbers here in west Texas, but it sure seems like we have a story like this every day in the papers (whether in Midland/Odessa, here in town or on some back road in the middle of nowhere.)
For my job I travel around 1,000 miles a week all over the state — from El Paso to Killeen and from Eagle Pass to Amarillo. So I see my fair share of horrible drivers and horrific accidents.
Here are a couple of ideas that may keep you from being the next statistic on the roads.
- PUT DOWN YOUR CELL PHONE!!! (Just wait until you’re at your destination to reply to that text)
- No need to hurry. I’m sure your boss will understand if you’re 2 minutes late to work because you caught that red light, instead of hitting the gas to beat that yellow.
- When driving in construction pay close attention to speed limits and don’t rubberneck. These men and women on the construction crews will greatly appreciate not hearing the rumble strips behind them because someone is not paying attention.
- Try to de-clutter your vehicle. Get rid of that phone (or just put it in your purse/pocket), coffee/other food items, map or printed out directions and quit looking in your rearview mirror to see how your hair is this morning (warning: this last one may cause you to show up to work with some seriously messed up hair, but at least you’ll show up to work!)
I know these tips may seem like common sense and you may just gloss over them, but please make a concerted effort to be safe on the roads. We are all out there and we all want to get home at night. Stay safe and see you out there fellow drivers.