Walking While Distracted Is Dangerous And On The Rise
Cell phones have quickly become the one accessory that many people cannot live without. Not so long ago, cell phones could only be used for talking and texting, but even back then, distracted driving was still causing accidents. Now that phones allow us to browse the internet and engage on social media, the problem has compounded.
CNN states that in one study researchers discovered that injuries to the face, neck, eyes, nose, and head have risen sharply over the past 20 years. The findings indicated that the majority of these injuries occurred due to distracted driving or walking and texting on a cell phone.
Distracted driving has led many states to enact distracted driving laws. 21 states along with Washington, D.C. have laws that prohibit a driver from using a handheld cell phone while driving. 48 states and Washington, D.C. have laws that have banned text messaging while driving. All but three of these states have primary enforcement of the law. However, distracted walking is also dangerous, as CNN reports.
Texting was blamed for a higher rate of near-miss accidents and a failure to look both ways when crossing a roadway, but CNN also notes that talking on the phone was less likely to increase the time it takes for a pedestrian to cross a roadway. Researchers noticed no significant difference in pedestrians’ alert time when listening to music.
The researchers, who are from the University of Calgary say that the findings require further investigation, but pedestrian distraction is a problem that is increasing globally.