Distracted Walking Injuries Can Be Prevented With Common Sense

All across the country, lawmakers and safety advocates have been making a push to raise awareness about the dangers posed by distracted driving. But new research shows that it doesn’t take four tires and a steering wheel for a commuter to be distracted, and the personal injury attorneys at Handler Henning & Rosenberg are providing guidance on preventing injuries stemming from distracted walking.

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It’s shocking that we would need PSAs teaching grown adults such simple tactics as looking both ways before crossing the street, but that’s what things might come to in this cellphone- and tablet-based world

Lancaster, Pennsylvania (PRWEB) July 10, 2013

With teens out of school and people on the roads in greater numbers, numerous Public Service Announcements warning about the repercussions of texting and driving are being unfurled, and rightly so. But with mobile devices now dominating the lives of most citizens, texting at the wheel is far from the only dangerous distraction in the world.

A new study featured in the August issue of Accident Analysis and Prevention shows that injuries attributable to distracted walking are actually on the upswing, and a HealthDay report entitled “Cellphone ‘Distracted Walking’ Sending Pedestrians To The ER” gives a preview of the findings contained therein.

In 2010, more than 1,500 pedestrians from around the country received emergency room treatment due to a cellphone-related mishap, an increase of hundreds from the previous year. What’s more, the researchers have noted that the actual number of incidents could in reality be dramatically higher, as the study didn’t take into account persons who died or did not immediately seek treatment.

The Lancaster personal injury lawyers of Handler Henning & Rosenberg have grown deeply concerned about this trend. Matthew P. Rosenberg, in particular, has been able to note a recent increase in accidents related to distracted driving and worries about the fact that distraction is no longer limited to the automotive realm.

“We’ve seen the troubling rise in distracted driving-related accidents right alongside everyone else,” said Mr. Rosenberg. “But what many may have underestimated is the pervasiveness of distraction in every part of our lives. It’s shocking that we would need PSAs teaching grown adults such simple tactics as looking both ways before crossing the street, but that’s what things might come to in this cellphone- and tablet-based world.”

The good news is that distraction is easily avoidable. Mr. Rosenberg and his associates have put together a list of safety tips that pedestrians and drivers can follow to avoid an accident stemming from distracted walking.

Pedestrians

•Put Down The Phone- This should seem like a no-brainer when it comes to preventing an accident, but stowing one’s phone and stepping to the side when taking a call is harder to do than many would admit. This simple tactic is essential to avoiding an injury where a distracted individual runs into a pole, another pedestrian, or an incoming motor vehicle.

•Eliminate Other Distractions- While cellphones stand out, numerous other distractions have invaded the daily lives of the average pedestrian. Persons on foot should avoid listening to music, burying their noses in a map or book, and eating or drinking.

•Obey Traffic Law- Whether a pedestrian is on his or her cellphone or not, it’s always important to cross at marked intersections and respect the right of way of vehicles that have the green light. Pedestrians should look both ways and stick to sidewalks when not crossing.

Drivers

•Take Notice of Inattentive Pedestrians- Drivers must scan the environment ahead of them for pedestrians on their phones or otherwise focused on something other than their own surroundings. One should slow down and be ready to hit the brakes if it looks like someone is giving more import to their conversation than to their safety.

•Put Down The Phone- It’s impossible for a driver to recognize a pedestrian’s inattentiveness when they’re being just as inattentive. Phones should be placed someplace out of reach, such as the glove compartment, and full attention should be given to the road.

These relatively simple precautions can go a long way toward ensuring the safety of pedestrians and eliminating the threat posed by distracted walking.

Handler Henning & Rosenberg has been assisting injured parties for more than 90 years. Matthew P. Rosenberg and the rest of the firm’s partners offer representation to those injured in a host of practice areas, including automobile accidents, defective products, premises liability, dog bites, and more. Injured parties are encouraged to visit the firm’s website or call to obtain a free consultation.


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