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Be Careful

Memorial Day weekend is upon us and I would like to take this opportunity to encourage you all to drive carefully, not only this weekend but ALL the time. I know you hear it all the time…drive carefully, buckle up, etc. Fact of the matter is, that in my position as a broadcaster who reads the news and has read the news for all of my career, it still bothers me when I have to read about a highway fatality. Sometimes I even pause for a fraction of a second and digest what I have just read. When I read about someone who over corrected and wound up dead in the ditch, I stop and think how that ONE incident that I have just read over the air effects that family. Their lives will be changed forever. Chances are, when they got up in that morning, something like this was the farthest thing in their mind. While the rest of us are going on with our lives, this family is calling other friends and relatives, dealing with the funeral home, making arrangements and somehow trying to make it through this tragedy. Their lives will be changed forever and forever. I think we have made great strides in seat belt usage and abstaining from alcohol before and during driving. That said, there are a million new distractions…cell phones, texting, CD players, etc. The day will soon be here, and I predict within 5 years, ALL vehicles will be equipped with internet access. My opinion, that’s the last thing we need and only bad will become of it. I don’t have the facts and figures, but I would dare say with our increased seat belt usage, car seats for kids, safer vehicles and moderation in alcohol consumption, we have probably moved 10 steps ahead and 20 steps back as far as safe driving. I think it is difficult to realize that when a vehicle is traveling 50, 60, 70 miles an hour (or even slower, think about it), that talking on your cell phone, texting, changing a CD, adjusting the radio, we have probably gone 50 steps back as far as safety is concerned. All too often, 2, 3 people are killed and/or seriously injured for life in a mishap that probably could have been prevented. Often times, the driver killed isn’t even the one at fault, it’s the “other guy”. When you get behind the wheel this Memorial Day weekend, pay rapt attention and drive as if your life depended on it. It really does. Have a SAFE Memorial Day.

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