Nov 17, 2009

Driving Safety

by Kendra Mann

With the past few weeks of school crammed with assignments and tests, students are exhausted by the time the holidays roll around, and safe driving becomes an issue. Although students claim that driving safely is important to them and do take some steps toward being careful, they may be over taken by fatigue and stress.

“I try to drive during the day so that it’s easier for me to see. I try to not drive during the rush hour,” sophomore Mallory Morris said.

“No texting,” sophomore Nicole Miglis said. “I hate it.”
There are many hazards on the road, and often students do not think about these dangers. Fatigue and too much traffic on the roads can be a cause of unsafe driving over the holidays according to Erin Pedigo in her article, “for college students, driving home for the holidays can be a dangerous adventure,” according to newsnetnebraska.org.

The roads are often more dangerous during the holidays because there are more people on the roads. According to AAA, a roadside service business, there were 41 million people on the road in America last year for Thanksgiving. Cell phones are also a big cause of hazardous driving among college students, according to Pedigo. Students often do not realize how harmful it can be to text or talk on the phone while driving. Morris admitted to texting and talking on the phone often while driving, as do many other students.

“It might be a little dangerous (to text while driving),” McGaha said.

Morris also admits to eating while driving, which can also be a hazard, according to Pedigo.

“I basically do everything I shouldn’t do when I drive,” Morris said.

Another driving mistake students often make is playing loud music to keep them awake, according to Pedigo. Although this may keep the student awake, it can also be a hazard because the music blocks out important sounds around them.

Miglis admits to playing her music too loud while driving.
Pedigo gives the following safety cautions: When you are about to leave, talk to someone at your destination to let them know which route you will be going on and at around what time you should arrive. Pedigo also says to check the weather and roads before heading out.

“Once you’re on the road drive defensively while obeying posted speeds, wear a seat belt and keep a blanket and other supplies in the car,” Peadigo said. Cautions can and should be taken this holiday to assure that students return safe for the next semester.

Additionally, make stops every two to three hours at well-lit areas to walk around and stretch your legs. The fresh air will help keep you awake too. If you become the least bit sleepy, find a place to pull over that is a safe area. If possible, carpool home with someone from a neighboring town or state. Aside from sharing the cost of gas, you can share driving duties.

Contact Kendra Mann at kmann2@liberty.edu.


 


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