Step away from the iphone…or any other gadget that distracts you while driving a car.

We’ve become such a tech savvy society that many feel the need to be connected at all times, it’s like we need facebook and twitter to be intravenously fed into our veins otherwise we feel disconnected from our peeps. Or at least that’s how it seems when you’re out driving on the road. You look left, someone is on their phone, you look right, someone is texting. It’s becoming out and out dangerous on the road, not because of the speeders and drunk divers, but because of all the technology being used while driving.

Last time I checked, there’s no such thing as autopilot for a car, and even auto pilot on a boat, when used improperly will slam you into an island. (Program your way points around the island dummy!) I’ve seen a boat up on a reef in the British Virgin Islands for this very reason. More and more as I see red flashing lights during the evening commute I wonder how much of it was caused by social media. Is there really something that has to be tweeted while your speeding down the road at 70 miles an hour?

Yesterday I was riding through one of our new home communities, and out of nowhere, out of a blind alley, a small child on a bicycle came darting out in front of the path of a moving car. My moving car! It scared the crap out of me. And I’m sure it scared the crap out of that little girl too. Luckily my reflexes were fast and I managed to slam on the brakes just before one of my worst nightmares was realized. I’m terrified of running a child over with my car. I’m almost certain if I was one of those people who texts and twitters while driving the outcome would have been somewhat different than having my heart return to it’s normal cadence as I watched her glide into the opened garage in the next alley and quickly disappear into the house. it was such a sudden and near miss that I could easily have changed lives forever with my car.

I wonder how often this scenario plays out, without the positive outcome of my encounter yesterday. It’s just a split second of inattention that can cause a horrific accident that can’t be taken back once it happens. Is tweeting and updating a facebook status really worth a minimum of car damage, to a maximum of bodily harm and injury? I don’t think so, that’s one of the reasons I don’t even have texting on my phone…removed the temptation.

So put the blackberry down, step away from the iphone and pay attention to the road when you’re on it. Little lives may depend on your own due diligence.