Emoticons Can Kill?

Do you text? Read emails on your phone? Look at social updates? View your calendar? Browse the internet? I know, you may be thinking…”Well I don’t do that while I am driving!” If that’s the case, then I cannot be more proud of you and the decision you have made regarding safety! However, this is not a message regarding phone usage while driving, This message is about the dangers of texting and walking. By the way, the article on the newspaper is a true story!

Did you know that the number of emergency room visits for distracted walking injuries doubled between 2005 and 2010 to more than 1,500? This is just one of many statistics showing that distracted walking injuries are on the rise. And in 2011, for the first time ever, the National Safety Council started including distracted walking as a category in its annual report on unintentional deaths and injuries. This ongoing trend has even inspired a new word for these distracted walkers: Petextrian (n. one who texts while walking, usually unaware of their surroundings).

Why has this become such an issue? Texting while walking divides our attention on what we are doing, what we are looking at, and what we are paying attention to. This increases our chance of angering those around us (running into people, talking too loud on your phone in a public area, etc.), or worse, getting injured (falling, running into objects, getting hit by a car, etc). Ultimately, texting and walking is a lose-lose situation; and you don’t want it to be your life that you lose!

Remember the Basics (they’re important to everyone’s safety)

  • Look both ways before crossing the street.
  • Be aware of your surroundings at all times.
  • Keep your eyes on the road, sidewalk, or path….slips, trips, and falls are a leading cause of accidents and injuries.
  • Use caution when on the phone at all times, no matter what you are doing.
  • Take a break from the phone and social media when in route…it will be okay.