The Fight Against Distraction

The Fight Against Distraction

Caroline Warman

Cars race pass as the speed limit decreases to 20 mph. School starts in about 20 minutes and kids are rushing to school. People are texting on their phones and doing their makeup. Rohit Kamath notices this and wonders about the effects of this terrible driving. He gets an idea to research of what can happen and then spread the word.

“I received my driver’s license two years ago and what really stood out to me was my failure to not do something while driving. Driving to school I see so many people on their phone, eating something, doing their makeup. I just wanted to see what influences teenagers. It’s a really big problem among teenagers in the community,” said Kamath.

Kamath recently showcased his research on distracted driving at the state level STEM science fair in San Antonio and placed very well.  He was awarded first place in the state in the Behavioral and Social Sciences category as well as top 16 in the entire fair. The American Psychological Association also gave him an award.

Kamath did his research by himself with some help from a Rice University professor. Due to his extensive research Kamath also earned a place in the summer engineering program at SMU. He plans to go if he can find the time in his busy schedule.

Grateful for the recognition Kamath still wants to spread the importance of only focusing on the road. He believes that it really can become less of a problem with a little help from others.

“I hope people realize it is a big problem. I found my research through a computer simulation and I set it up in the school. I had students come from Tompkins to complete the simulation under distracted conditions and I observed how many accidents they got into or the way they are. I based my conclusions off of those results,” said Kamath.