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Texting and driving technology
New technology is helping to end the dangers of technology.
"When you text and drive, (you're) 23-times more likely to have an accident," says Rick Reed, AT&T Area Retail Sales Manager. "We (saw) 100,000 accidents last year in the United States from people that were texting and driving."
Fox 25's Kisha Henry shows us how AT&T is now fighting technology... with technology. The company has a free app called "Drive Mode," which allows drivers to turn off all notifications from emails, text messages, picture messages and phone calls while they're driving. "If anyone calls you or sends you a text message, it will not ring. It will not alert to let you know that it came. In addition, it will also send that person a text message that says-- I am driving. I will call you when I get to my destination," says Reed. The app is available for Androids and Blackberry devices.
But, the latest safe-technology is AT&T's new Texting and Driving Simulator, which launched Wednesday. It puts you behind the wheel of a digital vehicle, with a cellphone in hand. "It tells you, you have a text. It'll give you the opportunity to actually answer that text. It's amazing how real-life it is," says Reed.
"It really showed me that when you're texting and driving, your speed can't stay constant. You're not aware of what's going on around you," says Emma Ryan, a student at the University of Central Oklahoma.
"We had one person that crashed within 30 seconds," says Reed.
"I'm a nurse. I work in the operating room and we see a lot of the problems from (texting and driving)," says Jodie Evans, who is also a parent-- one of the target audiences for the new simulator.
"We feel this is a great way for parents to introduce this to their kids," says Reed.
"We've all texted and been on the phone when we're driving and looked up, and just been really lucky that when we do go into the other lane, there's not somebody there," says Evans, who plans to use it on her own kids someday. "Yeah, when they get big enough, absolutely. Or, I'll just bring them to the hospital with me and they can see what happens to all my patients that get caught up in those accidents."
"Yeah, I think that's a great idea. It's just like the simulators we used when we were learning how to drive," says Debbie Hammett, another parent. "Sometimes people don't realize how fast things happen when you're driving, so if they can experience that in a safe way, that would be good."
Governor Mary Fallin has declared September 19, "No Texting While Driving Awareness Day." For more tools, to combat texting and driving, visit: ItCanWait.com.
Posted: Wednesday, September 19 2012, 09:35 PM CDT
IN OKLAHOMA NEWS
Safe room mandates remain rare in tornado states
May 24, 2013 07:24 GMT
By DAVID A. LIEB Associated Press
MOORE, Okla. (AP) -- When a deadly tornado tore through the central Oklahoma city of Moore, many survivors emerged from their storm shelters to see their homes blown away.
The mayor suggested that storm shelters should perhaps be mandated for new homes. But that may be hard sell.
But not a single state currently requires storm shelters in new homes. And not even many communities do so.
Costs remain a deterrent despite the life-saving potential of personal storm shelters. So, too, does a general resistance to government mandates in politically conservative states in the nation's heartland where tornadoes are most prevalent.
Instead of a stick, Oklahoma currently offers a carrot to build storm shelters. It uses federal funds to award $2,000 rebates to residents who win a special storm-shelter lottery.
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