By now, it's no secret that texting while driving is a contributing
factor in many serious car accidents, both here in Missouri and nationwide.
However, our Kansas City personal injury lawyers were alarmed to see a
recent study indicating that cell phone use is creating yet another health
hazard for pedestrians - and young people are particularly at-risk of injury.
The study, conducted by researchers at Ohio State University, revealed that
cell phone-related injuries among pedestrians have more than doubled over a six year period. In 2010, about 1,500 pedestrians received emergency
room medical treatment for cell phone related incidents, compared to just
559 in 2004. According to the study, the most at-risk age group for cell
phone related injuries is adults under age 30 - and more specifically,
people between the ages of 16 and 25. The types of injuries sustained
were widespread, ranging from falling off walkways or bridges to walking
into oncoming traffic. The outcomes of these accidents included broken
bones, concussions, dislocated shoulders, and car crash-related fatalities.
Distracted walking: Facts about teens, pedestrian injuries and fatalities
• According to
Safe Kids Worldwide, pedestrian fatalities are on the rise among teenagers between age 15
and 19. In fact, this age group now accounts for around 50% of all pedestrian
deaths in victims under age 19.
• A Safe Kids study found that one in five high schoolers and one
in eight middle schoolers had been observed crossing a roadway while distracted
by the use of an electronic device (talking on the phone, texting, listening
to music, playing a game, etc.). However, the most common source of electronic
distractions in this age group was caused by headphone usage or text messaging.
• Nearly half of teens who were polled for the Safe Kids study admitted
using a cell phone while walking to or from school.
So, how can these accidents be prevented? Safety experts say the solution
is simple. If you receive a call, text or email while walking, and the
message simply can't wait, step off the sidewalk and send your response.
Then, put your phone away until you've arrived safely at your destination.
Never use your phone in any capacity when you're attempting to cross
a roadway: research indicates that cell phone users are four times less
likely to remain within crosswalks, obey traffic signals, or check for
oncoming traffic before entering an intersection. "Blame the universal
myth of Multi-Tasking for the problem: human brain evolution does not
allow for texting at the same time as walking, and that's a fact,"
Dr. Rock Positano told the
Huffington Post. "You cannot think as a split screen: you are always limited to one
task at a time, one requiring full attention and one which becomes a hazardous
distraction. What appears to you to be multi-tasked activity are really
two tasks half-heartedly attended to, with sometimes-fatal results. You
can walk but not text, or text but not walk, much as you can drive but
not text or text but not drive, and never both at the same time."
Aaron Sachs and Associates is a personal injury law firm that serves auto
accident victims in Kansas City, Missouri and the surrounding areas, including
Lee's Summit, Independence, Liberty, Excelsior Springs, Belton, Harrisonville,
Peculiar, Pleasant Hill and Raymore. If you or a loved one has been injured
in a collision caused by another driver's negligence, please contact
our office to find out if we can help. Our firm works on a contingent-fee
basis, and we offer a free initial consultation to discuss your case and
answer your questions. If you'd like more information, please call
us toll-free at 1-855-695-1426. For your convenience, we are available
to assist you 24/7/365.
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