Returning Student Login

Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Rolling Stop – ComedyDefensiveDriving.com

Posted on:

No Cop, no stop. That seems to be the trend these days. Rolling through a stop sign or rolling through a red light to take a right turn is also referred to as a rolling stop or a California roll. Coincidentally, that’s my favorite Sushi. Drivers Education instructors teach new drivers to count three seconds before leaving a stop sign or taking a right turn at a red light. Although the law does not require that you stop for a certain amount of time, the law requires that your car settles. But three seconds will insure that your car has settled and will keep you from getting a citation. Some instructors teach students to count five seconds. But I believe three seconds is adequate. If you make someone behind you wait for an extra two seconds, you’re the Devil. At the very least, they may honk at you, hoping to wake you from your slumber. Or, thinking you may be finishing up a text message, they may twist on you and ignite a road rage fueled gun battle. And people do pull guns on each other over trivial things such as this. Now with new concealed carry laws, nearly everyone will be carrying a gun. Maybe we’ll even start seeing gun racks with rifles in the back window of pick-up trucks again, just like back in the 70’s. Not in all states, though. No such gun laws exist in California. So, perhaps in Northern California, we’ll start seeing wine racks in the back window of pick-up trucks. It’s just a thought…
Typically, citizens who get a camera light bill in the mail from a photo-enforced intersection, aren’t blowing through a red light. They are usually taking a right turn on red and rolling through the red light. So, teaching new drivers to count three seconds to make certain your car has settled has certainly saved them from getting cited, having their insurance rates increase due to those citations and possibly even preventing them from causing a crash.
So, don’t forget, even if there is no Cop, you still need to come to a complete stop. It will, at the end of the day, save you money, grief and maybe even save your life.
Until next week…
Daun Thompson
Writer / Comedienne / Artist
Rolling Stop – Comedy Defensive Driving

Underage Drinking – ComedyDefensiveDriving.com

Posted on:

When I moved to Texas in 1979, everyone in the car could have an open container…even the driver. I thought you’d get a citation if you didn’t drink and drive. We’ve totally evolved since those glory days (or, as some of my friends call them, the R.I.P. days). Eventually, the law changed and only passengers could have an open container (or a road sodie, as they were called). This way, the driver could merely hand their beverage over to a passenger before the officer approached the car…brilliant. I’m sure the laws in the state that I moved here from were no better. In fact, most bars never closed. Which also means they didn’t clean up. You needed a tetanus shot before you’d go into one of those places. And, as far as underage drinking went, the legal age to drink went from 21 down to 18. Then it went up to 19 for awhile and kind of hovered there. Then it eventually went back up to 21. Somewhere in between, I recall the drinking age being around 8 (maybe that was south of the border). People from European countries say they don’t have an underage drinking problem because they don’t “glamorize” drinking like we do here in the states. And their laws are strict and swift. So, would lowering the drinking age make it less attractive to teens? MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) says not. When states had lower legal drinking ages in America, the underage drinking problem was worse. Underage drunk drivers were involved in over twice as many fatal accidents.
A few months ago, there was a rumor going around on the interweb (that’s what my dad calls it) that the drinking age was going to be raised to 25. It was apparently just a myth. Kind of like celebrity deaths on the internet. That has to be super creepy to the celebrities themselves. 25 years of age is apparently when the frontal lobe completely develops. Better, more rational, adult decision making comes into play after 25 (hopefully). But not everyone matures at the same pace as others.
According to MADD, more than 25,000 lives have been saved in the U.S. because of the 21 minimum legal drinking age. They claim that the law continues to prevent tragedies and therefore decreases crashes by an estimated 16% and keeps young people safer from many other risks as well (such as alcohol poisoning, and aspiration).
Even after 21, it is encouraged to take a cab or Uber if you have consumed any alcohol. In fact, MADD has teamed up with Uber to encourage this. Uber’s revolutionary app connects users with safe, reliable rides at the touch of a button. Those are rides you can count on, whenever and wherever, so that people never have to get behind the wheel drunk.
After all, the easier it is to get a safe ride, the less likely adults are to drive after drinking.
Until next week….
Daun Thompson
Writer / Comedienne / Artist
Underage Drinking – Comedy Defensive Driving

Drunk Drivers – ComedyDefensiveDriving.com

Posted on:

Whether you’re Irish or just Irish for the day, Happy Saint Patrick’s Day! You may have noticed more police patrolling our streets since last weekend. Police have been initiating special law enforcement efforts during Saint Patrick’s Day week to keep drunk drivers off the road. This special intensive effort will run through tonight, March 17. But, be extra alert tomorrow morning on your commute for drunk drivers still on the road. Most states have been enforcing zero tolerance during this festive week. You don’t want your “luck of the Irish” to run out. And a DWI or vehicular manslaughter conviction could result in some lengthy jail time. Where you could find yourself as your cell mate’s Mary O’Reilly. Why do you think they call them cell mates?

This effective nationwide drunk driving crackdown includes high-visibility enforcement, high-profile events, and has been supported by national paid advertising, creating a comprehensive campaign to curb drunk driving over the St. Patrick’s Day holiday. The Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign reduces drunk driving fatalities by as much as 20 percent.

Here are a few tips to help keep you and others safe from harm and free of getting strapped with a permanent DWI conviction on your driving record.

  • Arrange a ride to and from your planned destination. A designated driver would be ideal.
  • Try to discourage friends from driving impaired. Offer them a lift if needed.

So, be safe this evening. And have a terrific Saint Patrick’s Day!

Until next week…

Daun Thompson
Writer / Comedienne / Artist

Drunk Drivers – Comedy Defensive Driving

Stolen Motor Vehicle – ComedyDefensiveDriving.com

Posted on:

Did you know that, according to the NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) a stolen motor vehicle is reported every 44 seconds in the United States? My car isn’t on the list of the top ten reported stolen vehicles. I don’t know whether I should be relieved or insulted. But the Dodge Charger is number one. I find that interesting, since the police drive them now. Some are even unmarked Chargers in a variety of civilian-looking colors. Dark Blue, Black, White, Red, Burgundy, Silver, Pewter and, of course, good old black and white. The lights are in the front grill or the back tinted window of the car. Now, I’m not a criminal, but if I see a civilian in a charger, no matter the color, I slam on the brakes. It’s just a bad habit. I saw a pink Charger and I locked ‘em up, like a dope. It was probably just Mary K.
40-50% of vehicle theft is due to the driver either leaving their car running, unattended or leaving their keys in the car. If someone steals your car, chances are they are going on a joy ride. With high speed police pursuits, damages and other unimaginable possibilities occurring, insurance may not cover your car damages if the theft is due to your own negligence. You will also get a citation for leaving your keys in your car.
To prevent your car’s picture from showing up on a milk carton, here’s a few useful tips. Never leave your keys in your car. Even when you’re pumping gas. Close and lock all windows and doors when you park. Always park in well-lit areas. Parking garages are even better since they usually have surveillance cameras that are monitored by property security or by towing companies. And never leave valuables in view.
As for theft of outside parts, wheel cover locks and fuel door locks can be purchased at most part supply stores or online. July and August are apparently months that yield more vehicle thefts. So, getting into good theft prevention habits now will have you well prepared.
So, remember…. keys, hide and lock. Those three words can save you a lot of grief and will help to avoid these three words…bus, cab and expense.
Until next week…
Daun Thompson
Writer / Comedienne / Artist
Stolen Motor Vehicle – Comedy Defensive Driving

Cell Phone Laws – ComedyDefensiveDriving.com

Posted on:

Thirteen states prohibit drivers from using cell phones. And 37 states (including Texas) have an outright ban on phone use by inexperienced and teen drivers. But Texas is not among the 44 states that ban text messaging while driving. Several major Texas cities (not including Dallas or Fort Worth) have enacted ordinances (city) banning texting while driving. But there are still no state cell phone laws in Texas. Austin and San Antonio, as of January 1, have prohibited any cell phone use while driving.
It is reported that there were more than 95,000 distraction-related traffic crashes in Texas in 2013 that resulted in more than 18,000 serious injuries and more than 500 deaths, according to state transportation figures. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that more than 9 people are killed in the U.S. every day in crashes that are reported to involve a distracted driver. So, why is there no state law?
This biannual session, there is widespread support from powerful lobbyist groups. And this session will have dozens of people there, who have been directly impacted by the dangers of distracted driving, asking legislators to make it a law.
Texas’ state laws already make it illegal for anyone under 18 and in school zones to use cell phones. A study was done last year that proved an average of 19 lives could be saved each year by banning texting while driving, alone.
And the fiscally responsible measure that will save the state and its people lots of money from lost wages, property damage and lawsuits is yet another valid reason to make this irresponsible act illegal.
Until next week…
Daun Thompson
Writer / Comedienne / Artist
Cell Phone Laws – Comedy Defensive Driving

The Dangers of Icy Driving – ComedyDefensiveDriving.com

Posted on:

It has been a pleasant winter here in the south. But those days are long gone and now we are facing the dangers of icy driving. Since I started driving, the information taught about what to do if you begin to skid out of control has changed. Probably due to front wheel drive, rear wheel drive, all wheel drive and anti-lock brakes. So now, do you steer into the skid, away from the skid, or should you just steer in the direction that you want to be going? My Uncle just skidded out of control and now he’s in rehab. Not hospital rehab, but alcohol rehab. The crazy thing is, my Uncle taught me how to drive. I was taught by a drunk driver. He taught me how to weave and drift across three lanes. And I’m really good at it. It’s in my genes, I suppose.
Now, with freezing rain and bad road conditions, here’s some great information about what to do if your car is caught in a skid. Even if the roads just look snowy, there may be ice under the snow. Or maybe even black ice.

  • Don’t jam on the brakes. Our first reaction, in a panic, may be to try to stop the car by hitting the brakes.
  • And don’t jerk the wheel. This would make a bad situation even worse.
  • Skip happy hour after work. Everyone else out there is going to be driving like they’re drunk. Don’t add to the mix.

So, here’s what to do if your vehicle begins to skid out of control:
Get off the brake, get off the accelerator, straighten the wheel and ride the skid out. It goes against what your instincts would tell you to do. But you’ll get better control of the vehicle and be able to steer around objects, rather than crashing into them. Always think ahead and anticipate the worst because it could happen to YOU.
Also, remember to drive with your eyes, not with your seat. In other words, don’t wait until you “feel” the car sliding underneath you. “Look” for what’s happening in front of you and around your vehicle for other cars and objects that may come into your path.
The best thing you can do to keep safe if you are uncomfortable driving in bad weather conditions is to just stay put until the city can get the roads winterized. If that’s not possible, remember to leave early and drive slower than the suggested speed limit. There will likely other cars speeding past you, honking at you and giving you the finger (that’s what the sunroof is for…and if you can drive with your knees, you can flip people off with both hands). Just let it go. You’ll likely see them in a ditch, further up. So, you win. Then you can wave at them with one, or all five fingers when you pass them.
Until next week…
Daun Thompson
Writer / Comedienne / Artist
The Dangers of Icy Driving – Comedy Defensive Driving

At Night Stay Right – ComedyDefensiveDriving.com

Posted on:

Don’t you often wonder how on Earth someone could enter a freeway or toll ramp on the wrong side and wind up, barreling along, going the wrong way? When I see one of these wrong way drivers on the news, the first thought that enters my head is they must be drunk when driving on the wrong side of the road. Or perhaps they’re English. Maybe they are both drunk and English. Even with signs posted “Wrong Way” and “Do Not Enter” and speed bumps on the road to warn them. How can they not see the signs or feel the thud as they cross over those big steel bumps? Several states are now using new road signs, lighting and technology to prevent wrong way drivers. In addition, they are trying to get drivers in the habit of driving in the far right lane at night, because drivers entering the wrong way tend to drive in their right side lane, thinking that they are on the correct side of the median. So, remember, at night, stay right. It may save your life as well as the life of that whacky wrong way driver.

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSA) suggests changes to ramps, including sensors that detect wrong way drivers and adding new signs or even lowering “Do Not Enter” and “Wrong Way” signs. If lowered, the signs will be more visible in their headlights at night. California has used lower signs since the 1970’s. Arizona, Virginia, Ohio and Florida have since lowered their signs. Some states resist lowering signs because they could cause injuries if the wrong way driver crashes into them. Also, snow can pile up and cover them. But, what’s worse? The wrong way driver crashing into the sign, or having them enter the wrong way and crashing into other drivers?
So, remember, at night, stay right. Not a bad habit to get into so you don’t become a statistic in next week’s news.
Until next week…
Daun Thompson
Writer / Comedienne / Artist
At Night Stay Right – Comedy Defensive Driving

Fatigued Driving – ComedyDefensiveDriving.com

Posted on:

When you hear the word “fatigue,” lack of sleep comes to mind. But, with cold and flu season, it’s good to remember that most cold medications contain ingredients that will not only knock your cold out, but will likely knock you out as well. Basically, any cold medication that comes with its own shot glass is a pretty good indication that you’re in for one heck of a ride. And it’s hard to justify missing work unless you’re on your death bed, right? So, there you go, driving to work while hopped up on cold medicine. Or, what the law likes to refer to as fatigued driving. You know, it is just as dangerous to be driving while fatigued as it is to be driving drunk. Most states have laws intended to curb this problem. Driving while drowsy may be punishable by a class A misdemeanor. And negligent vehicular homicide caused by driving while ability impaired by fatigue is punishable by a class E felony.

The National Transportation Safety Board reported that drowsy driving was likely the cause of more than half of crashes leading to a truck driver’s death. And, for each truck driver fatality, another three to four people are killed. And, not only taking medicine before driving, but how about if you’re not taking your medicine? Blood pressure medications, seizure medications and diabetics medications are just a few to be certain to maintain so you don’t have an episode while driving.
Just remember to read the crimp in the box and label on your medicine bottle (prescription and over the counter). They typically list indications of reactions to the medicine. And those indications contain phrases such as don’t operate machinery, don’t drive a car, may cause drowsiness, don’t mix with alcohol and don’t get anywhere near a 24 hour wedding chapel.
Until next week…
Daun Thompson
Writer / Comedienne / Artist
Fatigued Driving – Comedy Defensive Driving

The Odds of Dying in a Car Crash – ComedyDefensiveDriving.com

Posted on:

I have been preoccupied with thoughts of mortality since my Father’s death in September. Although his life ended as a result of natural causes, he barely escaped the odds of dying in a car crash or in a motorcycle crash. Of course these odds change as technology evolves. Everything does. And, it appears that more people are choosing cremation rather than a traditional funeral. This is what my Mother had chosen for him. A handful of children attended the memorial service at the funeral home, since there was no viewing, it seemed kid appropriate. Little did we know, there was another service scheduled across the hall from my Father’s, with a traditional viewing. Shortly after the service began, my tiny niece ran up to her mother and said “Mom! I just saw a dead body! A REAL dead body!” My sister was horrified. Then my niece looked around the room and with a puzzled look on her face, said “Where’s Grandpa’s body?” My sister told her “Grandpa’s body is in that box on the table.” My niece looked at her with a little grin. Clearly her mother was joking. “How did Grandpa fit in that little box?” My sister said “Because we had Grandpa cremated and his ashes are in that box.” My niece screamed “You set Grandpa on FIRE?”
With my preoccupation of life and death, I found some interesting statistics and other facts about death and dying. I wasn’t surprised that the National Safety Council’s table on an individual’s odds of dying from various causes lists motor vehicle incidents in the top four, with the odds being 1 in 112. The odds for a car occupant dying are 1 in 492. And the odds of a motorcycle rider dying are 1 in 922. The National Safety Council collects safety statistics for their annual Injury Facts publication, which includes this table on an individual’s odds of dying from various causes. But, still, the number one cause of death on the list is heart disease and cancer, which are 1 in 7 odds. Not good odds for any of the living and certainly bad news for those who are already gone.
And let us not forget the old hornet, wasp and bee sting deaths (1 in 75,852), legal execution (1 in 96,203) and being killed by a dog (1 in 103,798). Wait! I have three dogs that are seemingly nice. Tonight, I will be sleeping with one eye open.
Until next week …
Daun Thompson
Writer / Comedienne / Artist
The Odds of Dying in a Car Crash – Comedy Defensive Driving