Tragedies can be prevented, but only if we value life

Tragedies can be prevented, but only if we

By Eric Becker

The Write Team

CARLINVILLE (Feb. 15, 2018) – Saw a pretty brutal aftermath of a vehicle vs. motorcycle accident on social media recently that really got my attention.

A woman driving a car while texting pulled out of a side street onto a road where a motorcycle going 85 miles per hour met at the same point. Motorcycle went through and lodged in the passenger side of the car. Three people dead. Can you imagine the impact of such a collision? Good golly. The photo I saw will be forever etched in my mind.

Hearing about such tragedies is heartbreaking. Particularly when you realize that  it was a simple a prevention as paying attention while driving.

In addition, I’m not a fan of speeding. Not a fan of seeing speedsters march down the interstate like they own the road.

My son and I were at the St. Louis Science Center the other day and noticed a radar on the catwalk above I-64. My son was very intrigued by using the radar to scan the cars moving right below us at speeds which should be around 60-65 miles per hour.

My son clocked one car going 82 miles per hour. Sorry, that’s a little too fast for my taste. Particularly in populated areas like Forest Park in St. Louis.

Driving is a privilege, not a right. Personally, I thankfully don’t know of anyone whose life has been taken by a deranged driver. But it’s possible I will one day.

As a driver who spends two hours a day on the road going to and from work (estimated – sometimes longer than that) I have to make sure I’m alert at all times.

I could drive that route blindfolded backwards, but I won’t attempt to do that because, well, it’s just quite dangerous.

Personally, I could not live with myself if I caused personal harm, injury or death to another driver or pedestrian due to distracted driving.

Those three young women in Staunton whose lives were cut short in November by a driver who neglected to slow down in a construction area, causing a major crash on I-55 really got to me. The families affected by such tragedy right before Thanksgiving. It’s an unimaginable set of circumstances I cannot fathom.

The fact remains is that most of these tragedies are preventable.

First, don’t text and drive. I know it sounds a bit ridiculous to state the obvious, but as a society, the increase in technology and the need to get other people information as quickly as possible really annoys me.

If you are in a car and need to text somebody, pull over in a safe spot and go about your business. Otherwise, don’t use the cell phone. States have laws for a reason – protecting their citizens in the safest way possible.

We, as a society, need to value life. We need to value each other and we need to value respecting the rights of others.

When we speed at outrageous rates, when we text while driving, when we are distracted by other things in the car while driving, we in turn are being a nuisance.

A nuisance to ourselves. A nuisance to others on the highways and byways of this great nation.

The adaptation and increase of development of technological advances is great in so many ways. But there are downfalls as well.

When we don’t pay attention to things around us, we miss a lot. We cause problems and unnecessary tragedies. Families having to cope with the loss of a loved one just because of what? – Getting somewhere in a hurry, or sending a text to a friend or relative. Is it worth it? Is it really worth it?

Enjoy life. It’s way too short. I realize how old I’m getting and how much time I’ve wasted from nonsense. It could be gone in an instant. Enjoy your friends and family, and your future, but do it in a safe, responsible ways.