I remember it like it was yesterday. I was in the back seat of a four door mid-sized car with a male driver's instructor and two fellow students. I don't remember any of their names but I remember exactly where we were and what we were doing. I was 15 so it was 1976. In those days you took driver's education in high school. We were on Bellaire Street in Fort Worth near the old TCU soccer fields at Bellaire Drive West right before you went down the hill into Tanglewood. The instructor had a brake pedal on his side so both the driver and the instructor had the brakes but only the driver had the gas pedal.
After we stopped at the four way intersection, the instructor reached over with his left foot and floored the gas. We took off down the Bellaire Drive Hill faster than a roller coaster ride. My fellow student never hit the brake as we flew down the hill. It was awesome!
Now if I had ever driven that way and my parents saw me do it or heard of me do it that would have been the end of my young driving career. No problem if the instructor did it. That was part of teaching us how to drive.
Can you imagine today a driving instructor trying to show young drivers how to drive while they were using their cell phones? None of these young people would ever pass the class. The sad reality is that we don't have driver's education in Texas and that if we did, most of the student drivers would say they learned it was ok to use a cell phone because they see their parents using a cell phone and driving.
Distracted Driving education starts at home. If your children see you using a cell phone and driving, please don't be surprised to find out they too will use a cell phone and drive even if you instruct them not to.
The days of school driver's education may be over but our responsibility as parents exists this very moment. We can all do our part by setting a good example for our children.
Please don't text and drive or use your phone when driving in front of your children. You don't have the brake any more on your side of the car once they are not around you and they are driving by themselves.
Drive Safe – X THA TXT
Jeff Weinstein, Car accident lawyer