November 8, 2011

Teenagers Texting While Driving



     Texting is second nature for some teens—part of their being. Getting them to put the phone down while driving is challenging, They might be quick at it but still become distracted drivers when they take their eyes off the road.

     On November 1, 2011, the Pennsylvania Senate voted to make texting while driving illegal, a primary offense punishable by a $50 fine. Legislative leaders expect Gov. Tom Corbett will sign the bill.

     Late that day Knoch High School senior Alexis Summers, 17, was typing a text while driving. She lost control of the vehicle about two miles from her home. She died only hours after the Senate moved to make texting while driving illegal.

     The law might stop some people, but not all, according to one seventeen year old, but others will just try not to get caught. Then again, some people are stubborn…they don’t think it will happen to them.


     The lure of a text message can be impossible to ignore…not only for teenagers, but for adults. If the phone lights up, you feel you must grab it. After all, you don’t want people to think you’re ignoring them—you don’t want to miss something, and you don’t want to be socially disconnected.

     However, the ultimate social disconnection happened to Alexis Summers—and has happened to others who have suffered death while texting/telephoning and driving. That includes not only the texter, but the innocent victims killed or severely injured when the texter loses control of his/her vehicle.

     It seems arrogant to me that a person feels the need to be connected so intensely that they are slaves to their electronic equipment. The demands of a ringing phone or beeping piece of electronics overrides the need to practice safe driving.

     Parents and caretakers must set an example. If they text while driving, they teach their teenagers that it is an okay behavior.

     Anyone who texts/telephones while driving sets a negative example. Their actions are not done in a vacuum. They are visible for the world to see and learn from.

    A wise seventeen year old youth said he pulls over if he has to respond to a text he receives while driving, but otherwise ignores it. He doesn’t want to wreck.  It’s just not smart. It’s not worth it.


     Perhaps we need to teach teenagers—and adults—that if texting a person who is driving is inappropriate. That if they discover the textee is driving, they stop the “conversation” until it is safe to continue.


     The loss of Alexis Summers is especially tragic because she could have waited just a couple minutes, until it was safe, to be a texter/textee.

     Unfortunately, families, friends, and connections will be repeatedly destroyed until persons learn tragically, through personal experience, the value of safe texting.




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  1. My granddaughter just started driving and loves to text / Spread the word…CArolyn

    Comment by Joan — November 8, 2011 @ 7:25 pm | Reply

  2. Parents should also be monitoring their kids and talking to them about this. A smart phone is a big responsibility, and teens just don’t get it how dangerous distracted driving is. There is a free app called Teen Check-in that will alert parents whenever kids are texting and driving. Anyway I downloaded it at but you can probably also get it from the iPhone/Droid app stores.

    Comment by Jenna Williams — November 30, 2011 @ 3:45 pm | Reply

    • Jenna—thanks for the input. Parents need to support each other in any way they can.

      Carolyn Cornell Holland

      Comment by carolyncholland — November 30, 2011 @ 7:52 pm | Reply

  3. It’s hard to find knowledgeable people for this subject, however, you seem like you know what you’re talking about!

    Comment by — January 11, 2014 @ 4:24 pm | Reply

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