The Dangers of Distracted Walking (“Text-Walking”)

Distracted
driving is an incredibly dangerous activity, but just walking down the street
with your cell phone can also put you at risk. More than 1,500 Americans every
year are admitted to the hospital as a result of injuries sustained walking
while distracted by a cell phone.[1]

We do not
generally consider walking and texting to be nearly as dangerous as driving,
but people on foot are far more likely to look at their phones for long,
uninterrupted periods. Some people become completely unaware of their
surroundings, and studies show that using a phone while walking leads to a 61%
increase in veering sharply off course and a 13% increase in overshooting the
destination.[2]
Losing focus on your surroundings makes it far too easy to wander in the street
and be hit by a car.

Researchers
from William Patterson University found that half of all people crossing a
street in New York City with a “Don’t Walk” sign were using technology. Streets
with “Walk” signs had only about 30% of their pedestrians so engaged. New York
City had 144 pedestrian fatalities last year.[3]

The Eyes Up program has recently gone into effect to help NYC pedestrians become more aware of their surroundings. Common texting message such as “cya later” and “where ru?” have been inscribed on fake tombstones, which have then been placed around the city as overt reminders of the potentially deadly consequences of distracted walking.[4]

Distracted walking is a growing problem. According to Healthline News, there are actually
more injuries caused by distracted walking than by distracted driving.[5]

There is not yet a national policy in place for preventing distracted walking, but states have instituted their own penalties ranging from $197 in California to $1 in Massachusetts.[6]

As long as distracted walking continues to receive relatively few resources and little
support, senseless injuries and deaths will continue. Anytime you are walking
in the vicinity of a roadway, make sure your phone is in your pocket and your
eyes are up.


[1]
http://newscentral.exsees.com/item/292485a8673c5644d3cf1a67f3c70a6f-c836ac00c4e0f14f9183f6ab770116a6

[2]http://commcgi.cc.stonybrook.edu/am2/publish/Medical_Center_Health_Care_4/Walking_and_Texting_at_the_Same_Time_Stony_Brook_Study_Says_Think_Again.shtml

[3] http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10900-015-f0001-9

[4] See Footnote 1.

[5] https://www.buffalo.edu/news/releases/2014/02/022.html

[6]
http://www.bloomberg.com/bw/articles/2014-10-21/for-teens-texting-while-walking-is-also-dangerous

View Attorney Profile

P. Christopher Guedri

Licensed since 1979

Member at firm Allen, Allen, Allen & Allen

AWARDS

AV Preeminent

RECENT POSTS

  • When Is It Time to Stop Driving?
    Posted on September 25, 2016
    Topic: Personal Injury

    As we age, our reflexes and reaction time begin to slow. But at what point does this process mean it is no longer safe to drive? The decision to stop driving is very emotional, as it carries strong connotations of decreased independence and advancing frailty. But every year lives are tragically lost because family members ... Read more

  • How to Choose an Attorney after a Tractor Trailer Accident
    Posted on September 25, 2016
    Topic: Personal Injury Trucking Accidents

    If you have been involved in an accident with a tractor-trailer, choosing the right attorney is very important. Every firm out there claims that they are the best choice, but what qualities should you actually be looking for? Which law firm can get the most out of your case while protecting you and your rights? ... Read more

  • Protecting Yourself Before an Accident: How to Choose the Right Amount of I
    Posted on September 19, 2016
    Topic: Personal Injury

    As a personal injury attorney, I deal with the aftermath of terrible car accidents. But there are some things you can do before an accident to protect yourself and your family. Auto insurance is a complicated issue, and over the years I have found that many of my clients don’t know exactly how they are ... Read more

P. Christopher Guedri

Licensed since 1979

Member at firm Allen, Allen, Allen & Allen

AWARDS

AV Preeminent

RECENT POSTS

  • When Is It Time to Stop Driving?
    Posted on September 25, 2016
    Topic: Personal Injury

    As we age, our reflexes and reaction time begin to slow. But at what point does this process mean it is no longer safe to drive? The decision to stop driving is very emotional, as it carries strong connotations of decreased independence and advancing frailty. But every year lives are tragically lost because family members ... Read more

  • How to Choose an Attorney after a Tractor Trailer Accident
    Posted on September 25, 2016
    Topic: Personal Injury Trucking Accidents

    If you have been involved in an accident with a tractor-trailer, choosing the right attorney is very important. Every firm out there claims that they are the best choice, but what qualities should you actually be looking for? Which law firm can get the most out of your case while protecting you and your rights? ... Read more

  • Protecting Yourself Before an Accident: How to Choose the Right Amount of I
    Posted on September 19, 2016
    Topic: Personal Injury

    As a personal injury attorney, I deal with the aftermath of terrible car accidents. But there are some things you can do before an accident to protect yourself and your family. Auto insurance is a complicated issue, and over the years I have found that many of my clients don’t know exactly how they are ... Read more