Drivers in New York are aware of the restrictions when it comes to using technology behind the wheel. The state bans all handheld phone use but not hands-free phone use, for example. In any event, distractions have become such a problem that there’s talk about banning texting even among pedestrians. Many pedestrians are dying because they walk while distracted.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said that nearly 5,000 pedestrians were killed in traffic collisions in 2012, coming to an average of one death every two hours. An additional 76,000 pedestrians were injured that year: about one every seven minutes.
Common injuries among pedestrians
Distracted pedestrians may trip or veer off their path and suffer, for example, sprains or strains, fractures, bruises and cuts. Hitting their head, they may suffer a concussion or a more serious form of traumatic brain injury. Spinal cord injuries are not unknown either.
The risk of veering off the path is 60% greater among pedestrians who text while walking, according to a study from Stony Brook University. As everyone should know, multitasking will always lead to inattention.
Talking, email and games also pose a threat
All phone use distracts, including calling and sending emails. As for who runs the highest risk for injury while using a phone, that would be pedestrians under 25. Men are injured more than women.
When innocent pedestrians are injured
Not all pedestrian collisions are the fault of pedestrians, of course. If you were injured because a driver was distracted, drunk, drowsy or negligent in some other way, then you may be able to seek compensation from that driver’s auto insurer. This is where a lawyer would ideally come in. You may want to schedule a case assessment before proceeding.