If you haven’t yet heard the word “pedextrian” it’s probably only a matter of time. A portmanteau of “text” and “pedestrian,” the word is increasingly used to describe someone who walks with their head buried in a smartphone.
Most people know that distracted driving is a major problem. Now, distracted walking is quickly emerging as a source of serious personal injury. Distracted walking injuries are so common, in fact, the National Safety Council added them to its annual injury statistics report for the first time in 2015.
If you have been injured as a pedestrian, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Get in touch with a West Palm Beach pedestrian accident lawyer today.
Walking is a great way to help the environment and get some exercise, but it can also be dangerous if you’re not paying attention to your surroundings. The danger is amplified when pedestrians walk in busy areas with a lot of traffic.
The Washington Post reports that distracted walking has become such a big problem in China, local authorities have created sidewalks specifically designated for people using mobile phones as they walk.
In 2012, a teenager died when she was struck by a car while looking down at her smartphone as she crossed the street. In another case, a 14-year-old boy was injured after he walked off a six-foot-high bridge while talking on his phone.
In some cases, your smartphone can help you after a car accident.
Although fatal car accidents have declined in recent years, pedestrian deaths are actually on the rise. In 2012, for example, pedestrian deaths were up 11 percent from 2007 and accounted for 14 percent of all traffic fatalities in the United States.
Numerous studies show that distracted walking is responsible for a big portion of this increase.
In a 2012 study of the most dangerous intersections in Seattle, researchers found that almost one-third of pedestrians approaching these intersections were observed talking on a mobile phone, texting, or listening to music.
The pedestrians who texted took two seconds longer to cross an intersection compared to undistracted pedestrians. Distracted pedestrians were also four times more likely to engage in “unsafe crossing behavior” compared to people who walked without distractions.
In a 2013 study from Ohio State University, researchers discovered that the number of smartphone-related pedestrian injuries treated in emergency rooms across the country more than doubled between 2005 and 2010. Researchers also found that the most likely age group for smartphone-related pedestrian injuries was 16- to 25-year-olds.
Also Read : How to Avoid a Pedestrian Accident
According to the National Safety Council’s (NSC) Injury Facts 2015 report, distracted walking caused over 11,000 injuries between 2000 and 2011. Of all the people injured in distracted walking accidents, more than half were age 40 or younger.
Also, falls are responsible for the vast majority of distracted walking injuries, with almost 80 percent of distracted walkers suffering injuries due to falls.
Finally, there is a clear gender component to distracted walking. The NSC says 68 percent of people injured in distracted walking accidents are women.
Smartphones and mobile phones are a big part of everyday life for most people. When motorists and pedestrians get distracted by their phones, however, serious accidents can happen.
If you have been hurt by a distracted driver, or you have been injured in a pedestrian accident, you could be entitled to compensation for your injuries.
Call a West Palm Beach personal injury lawyer today to discuss your options.
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