I Will Never Look at Cell Phone In My Car Again After Terrifying Moment

traffic light

The post is by Jen Singer of Momma Said and was previously published on her blog.

After decades of driving, I know a thing or two about how to stay focused on the road while driving, despite distractions.

I’ve endured a carload of kids, jacked up on sugar and playing kazoos, as I drove them home from a birthday party.

And yet, I didn’t run a red light.

I’ve had to swerve when a car veered into my lane and nearly hit me and my car full of 12 year-old soccer players head-on.

And yet, I didn’t run a red light.

I’ve avoided car doors swinging open, bike messengers zooming by, and taxi cabs cutting me off in Manhattan, at rush hour, in the rain.

And yet, I didn’t run a red light.

I made a phone call from my car.

And I ran a red light.


My son and I were driving home Sunday from buying a file cabinet off Craigslist. When we stopped at a red light, I decided to call my manager to let him know the exciting news that I’d just found out I was going on Fox & Friends the next morning. I stuck the earpiece in my ear, dialed his number, and waited. The moment his voice mail picked up, my son asked me a question not realizing I was on the phone.

And I hit the gas.

And I drove into the intersection.

And I thanked God no cars were coming the other way.

And we made it to the other side unscathed. Physically, anyhow. The moment was still sinking into our psyches.

Meanwhile, I left the following phone message: “(Gasp!) Oh my God, Ed! I just ran a red light…..(silence while it sank in)…You just witnessed the last time I talk on the phone in my car…….(sigh). Oh yeah, I’m going on Fox tomorrow.”


So I put my phone in my purse and left it there the rest of the ride home. I put it there in my car on Monday, too. Yesterday, I put it in my jacket pocket. People called, but I didn’t answer. I didn’t even glance at who was calling.

I just drove.

On my way home from one son’s cross country meet last night, I pulled over to call my other son at home. I didn’t check email or texts at red lights. I didn’t call anyone or answer the phone while my car was in Drive.

And everyone survived.

So go ahead and call me. Text me. Email me. Leave a message, and I’ll catch up with you later.


Have you ever run a red light?


Image via Gzegorz Lobinski/ Flickr

Jen Singer from MommaSaid.net would love to hear from you on Twitter, @JenSinger

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