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Speak up if you see distracted driving

Two days ago, I was in the passenger seat of my friend’s vehicle. We were driving from class to go eat lunch, when I noticed he was texting on his phone. Not wanting to make the situation uncomfortable, I didn’t say anything, but I wish I had because he was quickly forced to come to a screeching halt behind a stopped school bus.

Luckily, no one was hurt, but my friend and I were shaken up. While he was at fault for texting on his phone, I could not help but acknowledge that I would have held myself culpable for not speaking up about his poor decision.

In retrospect, I can’t tell you one good reason why I chose to remain silent. Thinking that I didn’t want the conversation to be an awkward one between my friend and me would have been a very poor explanation as to why he hit a stopped school bus with innocent children inside and on the sidewalk.

The fact that my life was at risk should have been enough reason to speak out, but the fact that the lives of the children in that bus were also endangered is unacceptable. I have read many articles regarding the dangers of distracted driving, and I don’t wish to pontificate on that matter any further. Rather, I encourage those who witness such distractions while in the car with their friends or loved ones to speak up and stop the distracted driving as soon as you see it happen. You could be saving lives.

Elizabeth Bacher

Buffalo