Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Do You Love to Drive to Keep Kids Alive?

In a recent essay, Jerome Kodell, in part, writes the following:

"Love is not easy to do, but it is quite simple to understand. It means wanting what is best for the other and doing what is best for the other...Love is a matter of decisions and actions. Love is a dying to oneself and one's wishes and preferences, putting the other first."

What do these thoughts have to do with driving?

Quite simply, if we truly "love" to drive, then our behaviors behind the wheel will first and foremost reflect our concern for the lives and safety of others. Our love for driving will set aside desires to see how fast we can go, how quickly we can arrive at a destination, how many people we can talk to or text on our cell phone, how many stop signs and signals we can ignore, how close we can creep up on the driver in front of us without hitting their vehicle, or how we can show the world that we really can drink and drive (and so many other behaviors that put others and ourselves at risk). We will put others first - passengers, pedestrians, cyclists, children at play, other motorists.

Our love for driving reflects itself best when we expect the best from our behavior and drive to keep others (and ourselves) alive. This means we have expectations for both ourselves and others. These include:

-Buckling up every one every trip, no matter the distance
-Making sure children are outfitted with appropriate safety and booster seats
-Checking the area around the entire car, van, truck to make sure that no one is in danger of being backed or run over
-Turning off cell phones. There is no reason to talk or text and drive
-Never drive after consuming alcohol
-Observe speed limits, and drive slower when pedestrians, cyclists, children at play are present
-Stop! Take 3 To See at every stop sign, whether someone is present or not. It's good practice. We only become good at what we repeatedly practice. Stop signs, stop lights, and obeying all traffic signs are great opportunities to put our love for driving into practice each time we are on the road.
-Remember, "It's Not A Race! Create Space." 29% of injury crashes are the result of poor space management, including following too close. Leave a three second cushion between yourself and the vehicle in front of you. Leaving space to react is within your control, and could well save a life - maybe even your own.

These are just a few examples of what a true "love" for driving would look like. Please add to this blog by sharing your own examples of what it looks like that demonstrates how you love to drive to keep kids alive.

"Don't let the 2 minutes you 'save' be the last 2 minutes of someone's life." David Townsend (Tia's dad)

In safety,
Tom Everson

Keep Kids Alive Drive 25®
- A Non-Profit "For Action" Organization 501(c)(3)

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