WELCOME: Marina has been chosen as one of 5 finalists in our $1,000 Don’t Text & Drive Scholarship, which is intended to help raise awareness about the dangers of texting and driving amongst college-aged students.  Studies have shown that 18-24 year olds are twice as likely to be involved in a texting and driving accident than any other age group.  The finalist that creates the most social interaction about their essay, wins! (facebooktwitter and Google+

Make sure you “like,” “share,” “retweet,” and/or “+1” the social media post that led you here! (Rules)

Marina’s Essay:

The conversation I had over text was unimportant. I could have waited until I drove back to campus to text my cousin about dinner, but I did not. Instead I chose to put my life, and the life of others around me driving in a vulnerable and dangerous position. I could have caused an accident, and thank God I did not, because I do not think I could live with myself if I was the cause of someone’s injury or death.

Marina ChamberlainTruthfully, this is not the first time that I have reached for my phone to send a text while driving. Like anyone else, I might think that I know how to multitask driving a car, paying attention to the road and my surroundings, all while having a phone in one hand. It is not as if I was forced to use my phone while I drive. Yet, I still chose to make that decision that day and many times before. However, I consistently choose to reach over to pick up my phone while I drive. It is a habit that I cannot seem to break, but a necessary one to stop in order to be safe.

There have definitely been instances where I have been on my phone and almost caused an accident. As well as moments where I have seen a cop car nearby, and I immediately move my phone out of sight. All in the fear of being pulled over and given a ticket. Yet, I never feel guilty or shameful of the act that I was just committing. Furthermore, I do not know why this is such a hard habit to stop. Maybe it is because that we are all so addicted to our phones, and the need to always be up to date with what is going on in our lives, our friend’s lives, and even stranger’s lives. We have created ourselves to feel “FOMO”, otherwise known as fear of missing out. Due to that feeling, there is the need to always feel updated on what is going on in our lives and other people’s lives. Even if whatever is on our phones is unimportant, there is this intense feeling to always have that phone next to us to use if we need to. But do we really need to use it while we drive? No, absolutely not, because reaching for that stupid phone may cause an accident where someone may lose their priceless life. Therefore, I am going to stop texting while I drive. If it is truly important then I will make sure to pull over to the side of the road, exiting myself out of a dangerous situation.

From this day on I will make a promise to myself to never pick up my phone while driving again. I will instead choose to put the importance of other’s live and my own above a stupid piece of metal, because it is not worth it. One second of distraction will never be worth the damaging effects that a car accident can cause. Therefore, I will take it upon myself to become a better example of how a young driver should act. I will also make it a point to spread the importance of not texting while driving.

~Marina Chamberlain

NOTE: while some minor formatting was done while posting, this essay was not edited by the Law Offices of Matthew J. Quinlan.

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