Who knew distracted walking was hazardous to one’s health? Drunk and distracted driving are known dangers and causes of injury and fatalities. However, texting on a cell phone while walking is part of a disturbing trend.
Monday, the USA Today shared a story about a young man who was walking and texting on his cell phone. Totally distracted by his smart phone, he stumbled off the edge of a train platform and fell below onto a set of tracks. Fortunate for him, no train was barreling down the tracks at the time.
With smart phones a part of the world’s culture, people have a need to stay dialed-in or connected. However, just like distracted driving leads to serious injury and death; walking while texting or talking on a cell phone does as well.
There’s the story of a man who was talking on his cell phone with his head down. When he looked up during his stroll, he was face-to-face with a black bear. Luckily, he managed to run before being attacked.
Another distracted walker in the mall was captured on video texting just before stumbling face-first into an indoor pond. That video has since gone viral.
And then there are stories about countless pedestrians, who planted their faces on poles while they walked and sent text messages on their smart phones.
Statistics on distracted walkers are pretty new. In fact, the Consumer Product Safety Commission reported that 1,152 injury cases were reported last year.
However, given the fact that many don’t report using a cell phone or sending a text message before an accident, the numbers are likely higher.
Eric Lamberg, an associate physical therapy professor said:
“People really need to be aware that they are impacting their safety by texting or talking on the cell phone. I think the risk is there.”
Will laws aimed at distracted walkers cut down on pedestrian deaths and injuries from people who use their cell phones while not paying attention?
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