Local mom and blogger Kristen Kemp wrote a post so important that I’m borrowing heavily from it to share with you all. It’s all about:
If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you know that most host parents are preeetttyyy concerned about safe driving. Talking on a cellphone behind the wheel — or even worse — trying to text and drive at the same, equals a recipe for disaster.
Lots of au pair’s “get it”. They are willing to let the call role to voicemail and leave the phone in their knapsack while they ferry our beloveds to Little Gym. But a text message? All to have to do it read it is take your eyes off the road for 30 seconds. Which is enough time for something awful to occur.
But consider this:
In 2007, AAA and Seventeen Magazine conducted a survey which revealed that nearly 50 percent of teen drivers admitted to texting while driving.
That would be one half. Now, these are American teens; our au pairs are likely more mature.
OTTER (One Touch Text Response) … is a smartphone app that has a GPS system. While a car is in motion, it fields all incoming texts you receive while driving and will automatically reply: “The OTTER user is currently driving”. Once you are ready to reply (it will deactivate approximately six minutes after your car stops moving), all texts that came in will be marked as new and you can safely reply.
You can enable it to remove the distraction for you and you can use the Parental Control Feature to stop your teen from texting while driving. Activated by a password only you know, your teen will not hear texts coming in and cannot text while his car is in motion.
OTTER is currently available for Google’s Android platform (version 1.6 or higher). OTTER for Blackberry and Windows 7 are on the way. Additionally, If you have an iPhone, OTTER plans to be available shortly. The full version (with the Parental Control Feature/GPS) is currently available for a one-time download fee of $3.99, and no recurring charges.
If you supply your au pair with a cell phone, you might consider offering her or him the phone with this app already loaded and activated.
Sure, it means that while s/he is the driver or a passenger in a moving car , your au pair can’t text… but s/he’ll live.
That’s the point.