Distracted Walking – A Growing Problem
An estimated ten percent of pedestrian car accidents that send people to emergency rooms are due to distracted walking. That’s thousands of people injured – and sometimes killed – because they were looking at a device.
In 2014, Joshua Burwell of San Diego, California was trying to photograph a sunset when he took a fatal fall off of Sunset Cliffs. Another man was videotaped walking straight onto a train platform while talking on his phone.
The number of emergency room visits for distracted walking injuries doubled between 2005 and 2010, but Dr. Claudette Lajam, an orthopedic surgeon, believes that the problem is likely much bigger.
“A lot of people don’t admit that they do it,” Dr. Lajam told CBS news in a December 2015 interview, “It’s getting worse as we have more and more features on these devices that we carry around with us that can distract us.”
Moment Of Silence Campaign
For the first time, the National Safety Council has included distracted walking as a category in its annual report on accidental deaths and injuries.
Some staggering distracted walking research found that one in five high school students and one in eight middle school students cross the street while distracted. 39% of those who walk distracted are typing on a cell phone or listening to headphones.
Millennials between age 21 and 25 are most likely to be injured while distracted by a device.
Safe Kids Worldwide launched the “Moment of Silence” Campaign in honor of Christina Morris-Ward who was killed in 2012 while distracted as she crossed the street. The Moment of Silence campaign reminds kids and teens to silence put down their phones and other devices before crossing.
Take the Distracted Walking Pledge at http://www.safekids.org/distracted-walking-pledge