Here’s another reason to stop Snapchatting/Facebooking while you’re driving!
The Malaysian police are reminding motorists once again that using a smartphone/handphone while driving is against the law, and they’re going to be pulling all stops to clamp down on the bad, often dangerous habit.
The Sun quoted Federal traffic investigation and enforcement department director SAC Datuk Mahamad Akhir Darus as saying, “Motorists caught holding a mobile phone while driving will be issued a summons. Unlike criminal cases where the onus is on us to prove one’s guilt, this is a compound summons and it is up to the offenders to prove otherwise if they wish to dispute their case,” said Mahamad, adding that this includes holding the smartphone/handphone while waiting at traffic lights or in traffic jams.
“There is no reason for a motorist to be holding a mobile phone when his or her hands should be on the wheel focusing on the driving. When the car is in motion, a driver should be looking through his windscreen and not his smartphone screen,” he said.
Last week, Transport Minister Datuk Sri Liow Tiong Lai said that the use of mobile phones while driving and riding has been identified as the main cause of road accidents in Malaysia. A study conducted by the Malaysian Institute of Road Safety Research (MIROS) revealed that 80% of accidents were caused by human negligence, including the use of mobile phones.
“Actually the phone has changed our lives tremendously with the creation of various applications such as WhatsApp and multimedia messages. It has also changed the question of road safety and can become very dangerous when we use it to surf the websites, take pictures or find locations while driving a car or riding a motorcycle,” he told reporters.
You’ve probably seen the public service announcements and awareness campaigns, so you know it’s a real problem. The popularity of mobile devices and social media apps have had some unintended and even dangerous consequences. Using a handphone/smartphone while driving, whether it is texting, taking a selfie, or posting up a Snap, can distract you while driving and result in injury or loss of life – and not necessarily yours. All it takes is a split second, and more often than not, it’s not worth a social media post.
Your Snapchat post can wait, those Instagram pictures can be viewed and liked later, and your friends on Facebook would definitely want you get to your destination in one piece so put that smartphone down. And if the beeping/ringing of your smartphone is a distraction while you’re driving (hence you feel the need to pick it up), put your phone on complete silent mode without vibration on notifications.
This is a serious matter that needs to be given attention and it’s better to be safe than sorry!