Sunday, August 11, 2013

Can the Rule of 10,000 Keep Kids Alive?

In his book Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell has done much to popularize the "10,000 Hour Rule," - the idea that 10,000 hours of practice at any one pursuit helps make one an expert. If this hypothesis is true, what would happen to crash, injury, and death rates on roadways if each and every driver committed to 10,000 hours, or even 10,000 repetitions, of practice on all key driving skills necessary to keep everyone safe on and around roadways?

Here is a list of a few of the basic skills we each can include in our 10,000 repetitions safe-driving exercise regimen:

What if every time any one of us gets behind the wheel, our first thoughts are, "I am going to drive safely. I am going to...

...walk around the vehicle to make sure no children are hiding in blind spots 

...turn off my cell phone and set it aside until I reach my destination

...buckle up and make sure all passengers are buckled up as well


...observe all posted speed limits in neighborhoods and beyond, and adjust downward due to presence of children at play, cyclists, road and weather conditions

...create space - at least 3 to 4 seconds between my vehicle and others around me, so I have time to react to the driving behaviors of others a thinker and use my blinker to signal all turns and lane changes

...stop - take 3 to see at all stop signs regardless of whether or not anyone is present - it is my chance to practice making complete stops so I am ready the one time that someone does seem to appear out of nowhere

...observe all traffic signals and traffic signs

Practice each and every one of these skills for 10,000 hours or 10,000 repetitions. Send us a report on how your driving behaviors change over time to

Finally, think of the ones you love, the ones who are waiting for you to return home safely. Ask the questions:

"Who do I love" and "who loves me?" 

May the faces of all the loved ones you picture in your mind give you the "will" to practice the driving skills necessary to keep kids (of all ages) alive and to make safe driving behaviors a lifetime, life-preserving, and life-saving habit. 

Learn more about how to begin a "Keep Kids Alive" educational campaign in your community @

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