Snapchat and Distracted Driving
Snapchat has become quite a popular application for smart phone users in the past couple of years. Girls and guys below the age of 27 are the biggest fans of the program, and few experts have even predicted that Snapchat might overcome Facebook in popularity in a few years to come.
The reason behind its popularity is how this application works. Many other applications allow you to chat, but with this one, you do snap chatting. What it means is that every small and big conversation is made with the help of pictures – thus the name Snapchat.
The pictures you send to the person you are chatting with will disappear from his screen within 10 seconds. Which text message will you pay more attention to the one that you know will stay in your inbox unless you delete it or the one that you know will disappear in next 10 seconds?
From this, you can already conclude that chatting on Snapchat is even more dangerous while driving than doing regular texting. It is because you are more focused on the message you receive knowing that it will disappear within 10 seconds. And this translates to more traffic accidents on the road.
Few people would argue that they only take a couple of seconds to look at their texts, but this is an invalid argument. An accident does not even need a second to take place. It is all about attention. The moment you lose your attention you not only lose focus on the road but also subconsciously forget that you are driving a car.
Also, this can lead to a little rotation in your steering. The moment you look up you realize that you are already on your way to hit into a pole or tree. Quite often there is news on TV wherein a driver crashes into a tree, sways off the road or runs into another car because he was looking at his phone.
The problem with Snapchat is that this particular application requires your full attention when you look at it. For 3 to 4 seconds your attention is not on the road at all.
When you are driving fast these 3 to 4 minutes can prove to be fatal for a driver if an accident takes place. Another new feature on Snapchat is that this application will tell the user his speed. So this means people will now try to go as fast as they can and share their speeds on the go.
There are no cases involving Snapchat as the culprit in a traffic accident as of now. However, the application is quite new right now, and as the time passes, we can expect news regarding Snapchat accidents creeping in. Driving while intoxicated is a crime. And driving while texting or looking at your Snapchat messages is no less crime. Just like intoxication, reading your messages while driving leads to accidents, severe ones.
It is best that you avoid using Snapchat or any other applications while driving, and that you instead try and become a role model for young drivers.