Meet our Texts=Wrecks finalists: Mae Dye
We’ve met three fantastic individuals and read what they had to say about the dangers of driving distracted. We’re pleased to introduce our next scholarship finalist, 18-year-old Mae Dye from Gloucester, Virginia! She just graduated from Gloucester High School and will pursue her Bachelor of Arts at William & Mary in nearby Williamsburg in the fall. What does this local student have to say about staying focused while driving?
Anyone who has allowed me to ride in a car with them knows that I will not get in a car with them again if I feel unsafe. I am the type of passenger who will turn your music down if it is too loud, will change the music for you, and take your phone out of your hand if you are texting. It is scientifically proven that our brains can only focus on one activity at a time, so if you are texting or even singing to music, you are not truly focused on driving. This is why I feel that teenagers should turn their phones on airplane mode, or even hand their phones to someone else while they are driving. It is important that our attentions be solely focused on driving when on the road.
Many people who are adults take driving for granted. They assume that they are great drivers because they have driven for so long; so they lose focus as they drive. Although these people may have experience driving, they are still capable of making mistakes. I have witnessed three different people drive their cars into the ditch outside my house and become stuck. One of these cars almost flipped as well. Being overconfident and not focusing while driving can just as easily lead to an accident as drinking or texting. Everyone needs to realize that driving is a responsibility; our actions on the road affect everyone.
I have seen firsthand what driving distracted can lead to. On New Year’s Day of 2017 I watched my friend drive his car into a tree; his car proceeded to flip. Luckily he was not injured. He claimed he had not been texting, but merely reaching down to grab something. Clearly, even a small distraction can lead to major consequences. In this particular situation, no one was hurt, but someone very easily could have been. If I had not been there, my other friend would have been in the passenger side of the car, which obtained the worst damage when the car flipped. His choice to not stay focused could have injured someone else.
I have also witnessed the effects of alcohol when involved with driving. One morning before school my band director was hit head on by a drunk driver. At first, his injuries seemed minimal. It seemed as though he only had a concussion and a knee injury. He continued to teach and we thought everything was going to be okay, but this one drunk driver would affect the lives of every band student at Gloucester High School. Two months after his accident, doctors discovered a brain bleed in our band teacher. He was rushed to surgery the day they found it, and was out of school for another month. The entire band collectively decided to cancel our Christmas concert, because it would not be the same without our band director. The whole band suffered as we worried about our teacher and were not able to make music. Eventually, our teacher came back to school and finished the year strong, but he was told he had to retire. Our whole band has spent the past two years learning how to cope with a new band director, because our band director was unable to continue teaching.
Both distractions and drunk driving can lead to major repercussions that affect a menagerie of people, not just the person driving. Texting or driving distracted can cause harm to anyone else riding in the car with you. Driving while drunk can lead to long-term effects. Even if an accident only injures one person, it affects an entire community of people who care about that one person. I have learned so far in life that my actions while driving have the potential to affect multitudes of people, not just me. This is why, as an adult, I will choose to be a safe driver, to protect myself and those around me.
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Prevention, empathy, and diligence are hallmarks of everything we do at GibsonSingleton Virginia Injury Attorneys. Our community can see these ideals lived out in our work to prevent personal injuries from happening.
- Safety Education
GibsonSingleton launches a “Texts=Wrecks” campaign to reduce the number of people injured or killed by distracted drivers.
- Annual Coat Drive
During the fall, our team works to distribute coats to people in need in our community.
- Hands-on Service
John and Ken join the Gloucester Point Rotary Club in cleaning up the community.
- Supporting Local Schools
The Gibson family participates in Gloucester’s Botetourt Elementary Shuffle fundraiser.