Spoiler alert: people die.
Earlier last month, a lady was so bored in traffic that she started to host her own karaoke show on Snapchat. Before we could give her a standing ovation, the screeching of a car wheel sounded and the livestream abruptly ended. The next snap pictured the diva’s face adorned with bloody scrapings, her body resting in white. Caption: “My bed for the night. Lucky to be alive.”
For some reason, we are addicted to our phones. We use them when we’re in school, when we’re supposed to be studying, when we’re “exercising” and even when we’re defecating. For some reason, we just can’t seem to stop sharing every part of our day.
Bored in class? Let’s take a picture of it. Snapchat has a new filter? Let’s test it out! It’s a habit almost everyone with a Snapchat is guilty of, including myself. And it’s a relatively harmless activity when you undermine your grades since you’re probably procrastinating.
But once you take the Snapchat on the road, things can get deadly.
Accidents and Driving
Based off of what you see on television and during our life experiences, what type of actions do you think cause the most accidents? Drunk driving? Distracted driving? Speeding? There have been several campaigns to stop speeding years ago. Drunk driving was the next big campaign to help others make better decisions on the road. But distracted driving has caused more accidents than drunk driving and speeding, according to the U.S Department of Transportation in 2013.
Snapchatting while driving is distracted driving
Distracted driving involves looking for things in your car, eating food, applying makeup and, of course, using your cell phone. In 2011, over 387,000 people were injured and 3,331 were killed due to distracted driving, according to the U.S Department of Transportation in 2013. That was the year Snapchat had its debut and barely anyone even knew about it. Imagine how many lives are injured or lost due to distracted driving today.
Actually, you don’t have to. According to the New York Times, there has been a steady decrease of deaths from auto crashes. However, in the last three years, the number of deaths have increased. Before July 2016, highway deaths had already jumped 10.4% higher than the total in 2015, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
According to Diststraction.gov, “At any given moment in the United States, approximately 660,000 drivers are using cell phones or manipulating electronic devices while driving.” Among all the other apps millennials use, Snapchat is the app most likely to be used at the wheel.
Imagine if you had a child in the passenger seat and you’re crossing an intersection when suddenly a speeding car crashes into your car on the right, killing your child on impact. Minutes later you found that the driver of the speeding car was singing along to one of his favorite songs in the car and recording it to Snapchat.
The driver acted as if he couldn’t have streamed that song later. He acted as if that would be his last time listening to that song. But in reality, it was your son’s last time.
Snapchat’s motto is “Life’s more fun when you live in the moment,” which I find ironically fitting. Because, yes, recording and uploading stories that disappear within a day can be classified as living in the moment to an extent. But after that moment ends, what’s to say your life won’t as well?