That little glowing computer that you keep in your pocket or purse can pose a serious safety threat – and not just while you're driving. That's right, using your cell phone while walking busy streets could lead to serious accidents.
The dangers of distracted driving have garnered a lot of attention, as they should. However, distracted pedestrians are becoming a significant problem as well, especially in crowded areas where walking is a viable way to commute.
Cell phones have become a staple in our society. You don't have to look very far to see someone talking, texting, or listening to earbuds on their phone. Social media has slowly integrated itself into almost every aspect of life, and people are finding new ways to document their daily routines. Unfortunately, this had led to some interesting consequences.
Too many pedestrians are being injured because they aren't paying attention to street signs or where they're walking. Younger pedestrians pose the greatest threat to themselves and others. In a serious incident, a 14-year-old boy fell from a 6-ft bridge while talking on his phone.
All it takes is one text alert or Facebook notification for pedestrians to take their eyes off where they're walking. This could lead to entering crosswalks accidentally, running in to other pedestrians, entering street construction zones, and more.
In recent years, pedestrian accidents have dropped overall. However, the number of pedestrian accidents caused by cell phone use has increased drastically. From 2005 to 2010, pedestrian accidents involving cell phones went from 256 to 1,506.
Young people, ages 16 -25, were the candidates most likely to be injured in distracted pedestrian accidents. However, it's not simply contained to that demographic. Any habitual phone user could fall prey to an unexpected accident.
While data is difficult to collect – mainly because emergency rooms don't always record cell phone use as a cause to the accident – the numbers are startling. It's a growing concern among many researchers.
Here's the million-dollar question: How do you prevent these accidents from happening? Many believe it starts with the family. If parents and older siblings set good examples, the younger generations are sure to follow.
This isn't just about simply walking and texting, but cell phone use while driving as well. Be the best role model you can, and your child will be less likely to develop dangerous distracted habits.
Cell phones can be wonderful tools and great forms of entertainment. Just be sure to use your cell phone properly. If you're out for a walk on a busy street or are behind the wheel, be sure to put your phone down and concentrate on your safety.
If a distracted driver injures you, contact our law firm for a free legal consultation. We're standing by 24/7 to get you the legal help you need.