The Syracuse Post-Standard reports that a Syracuse University student was driving home to Albany in the dark hours of the morning (about 4:30 a.m.) when her car slid off the Thruway and onto the median. She then apparently got out of her car and tried to cross the westbound Thruway to make her way to the onramp in Herkimera a couple of miles west. Unfortunately, a westbound hit-and-run vehicle struck and killed her as she crossed.
When I read this report, the pressing question I had was, “where was her cell phone?”
The nearly ubiquitous cell phone has caused alarm among many, including myself, because of an epidemic of cell-phone distracted driving wreaking havoc on our roadways. I have personally brought several Central New York car accident lawsuits against drivers too busy yapping on their cell phone to pay attention to traffic signals, stop signs, or cars stopped in front of them.
But this recent Central New York car accident reminds us that cell phones are both a blessing and a curse; if this student had a cell phone, would she have needed to exit her car and cross the Thruway to get help? No! She would have just called for help on her cell phone.
And don’t forget that emergency responders arrive faster to accident scenes these days, and save more lives, because cell phone users are able report accidents as they happen. Remember the days when you had to run to the nearest house and ask the residents to call the police when you saw an accident?
Finally, don’t forget that cell phones are handy for real-time reporting of erratic or road-rage driving..
Just like most human inventions, cell phones are both a blessing and a curse. If used properly, cell phone save lives and avoid accidents. But if used improperly, they reap misery and destruction. How will you use your cell phone?