Distracted Driving, Texting and Driving

Simulator shows firsthand dangers of texting while driving


AT&T’s It Can Wait Campaign – www.itcanwait.com


AT&T has teamed up with Virginia Tech Transportation Institute to develop the “Texting and Driving: It Can Wait” Simulator – to show firsthand the dangers of texting behind the wheel – in a safe way.  The simulator attempts to mimic the environments in which the driver needs pay attention to the tasks of driving – speeding up, slowing down, swerving, etc.  Finally comes the crash caused by texting while driving. The message: No one is immune from the effects of distracted driving.

The physical simulator that is made available at schools and community organizations, consists of a bucket seat behind a small steering wheel, metal accelerator and brake pedals, a smart phone perched on a narrow stand by the driver’s right hand, and a videogame-like display on a giant TV screen.  To play the 3D texting while driving simulator online, you will need to download the plugin.

With many public schools haven eliminated their driver’s ed programs, these are good complements to outreach programs that teach the dangers of distracted driving similar to the way the dangers of drunken driving are taught through courses such as those offered at http://www.driverimprovements.com. The AT&T simulators are also part of the Friday Night Live campaign that focuses on the dangers of driving distracted, drunk or drugged. The best teachers, however, are the parents, where the adage “do what I say and not what I do” can have deadly effects.