Much has been discussed recently regarding the dangers of text messaging while driving. As it turns out pedestrians who are too busy looking at their phones to watch where they’re walking can be an equally serious traffic hazard.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in Washington D.C., texting distractions may have been a contributing factor in the 4,280 pedestrian traffic fatalities recorded in 2010. What’s more, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission in Washington D.C. says 1,152 pedestrians were treated in emergency rooms during 2011 after being injured while using a cellphone or some other portable electronic device.
In a Liberty Mutual Insurance survey conducted this April, 60 percent of the more than 1,000 people queried said they routinely text, answer emails, talk or listen to music while on their phones while walking.
Clearly the lesson to be learned is one our mothers probably taught us, namely watch where you’re going and look both ways before crossing the street.