Teens Urged to Sign 'No Texting While Driving' Pledge

By: Jessica Dealy Email
By: Jessica Dealy Email

If you were to look at the last text message you sent or received today, would you consider it worthy of causing a serious accident? Looking at it from that perspective, there is really no text that can't wait.

AT&T took that message to Meridian High School seniors as part of "Texting and Driving - It Can Wait" Awareness Day.

"We have learned that, along with this new technology, texting is a wonderful tool. This technology has created a hazard in our culture and texting while driving has proven to be very, very dangerous," said C.D. Smith, AT&T regional director.

So dangerous that AT&T representatives say drivers who text from behind the wheel are 23 times more likely to be involved in some type of accident.

Law enforcement officers told Meridian High seniors that after seeing these accidents first hand, this is more than just data and statistics to them.

"Any time you take your attention and put it somewhere other than driving, you are creating a dangerous situation that oftentimes leads into an accident," said Andy West of the Mississippi Highway Patrol.

AT&T's message proved effective. After the program, many seniors agreed to sign a pledge against texting while driving.

"I signed it because I have heard of texting while driving and I don't want to be part of that tragedy," said Stephen Sanborn.

"I want to be safe. I want to go off to college," said John Sims. "I think everybody wants to be safe."

According to a recent Pew study, 54% of teenagers text every day. Half send more than 50 texts per day. A third send more than 100 per day.

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