Thursday, November 16, 2006

Listen to the females in your family - speed kills!

Writing an essay on the causes of high speed driving on our roads, one of my students, a female undergraduate, wrote, ‘Driving at high speed is slow suicide’. Displaying a wisdom beyond her years, but typical of her gender, she hit the nail squarely on the head.

As we are all given life by the females of the species – our mothers – it is understandable that they are loathe to let us leave it in a violent and painful fashion before our time.

As a young man of 18, I enjoyed driving too fast. I rode my 650cc motorbike at speed along the roads of my corner of England. My mother continually told me to drive slower and with due care and attention, and as I grew older and a little more sensible, I did as she said – I went slower.

Everybody knows that speed kills, but short of death, there is the slow lingering agony that a serious accident can cause.

One of our pals met with a serious accident back then. He is still undergoing treatment for the massive injuries to his lower back that he sustained on that terrible night. Every day is a torture – an ordeal he has to overcome and endure. He has had to retire early because of what happened to him while going too fast in a built up area.

An accident that befell me while I was going home one night put me in hospital for a month and off work for three. Ask my mother how she felt being woken up at 3 in the morning to be told that her son was in the intensive care unit of a local hospital.

Sooner or later that’s the price of driving too fast – serious, lasting injury for the victim, and the agony loved ones have to endure when they are told – or death!

It is mainly male drivers that drive dangerously fast. My message to them is that they should listen to their mothers, grandmothers, sisters, aunts or wives – driving at high speed is slow suicide, or murder.

Robert L. Fielding


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