Monday, August 30, 2010

Don't Tweet and Drive

I overlooked a cautionary tale from the Pacific coast a couple of weeks ago.

Dr. Frank Ryan, 50, a famous plastic surgeon, drove his vehicle off a California cliff and was killed.

One of his patients revealed to ABC News that he had been sending a Twitter message about his dog while he was driving.

This ought to be a warning to everyone who has tempted fate by texting from behind the wheel — or even talking on the phone while driving.

And I don't mean a subtle warning, like the ones you used to see on cigarette packages.

I mean a blunt warning, perhaps backed up by some serious legislation and the threat of some jail time.

Road safety isn't just about seat belts and air bags anymore. Apparently, 21st century drivers must be reminded relentlessly to keep their eyes on the road.

And they must be told not to do things that will distract them while driving — like texting or carrying on phone conversations.

Don't do that. Is that blunt enough?

You might not live in an area where you could drive off a cliff. But keeping your eyes on the road while you're driving isn't just something your Mom told you to be a party pooper.

It was good advice.

Remember, Dr. Ryan was apparently sending a Twitter message about his dog when his vehicle took its fatal plunge.

Is a Twitter message (regardless of what it may be about) worth risking your life?

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