The dangers of texting while driving are as self-evident as the real risks of drinking and driving. Driving distracted or impaired is something that, as a society, we have deemed both irresponsible, negligent and dangerous not only to the driver and their passengers, but to all those that they share the road with. So, why do we not look at distracted walking, especially near roadways, in the same dangerously irresponsible light? Given some facts of a phenomenon known as inattentional blindness, you may think twice about carelessly getting lost in that email or YouTube clip while walking around town.
Facts About Inattentional Blindness
- According to the University of Queensland, walking is inhibited when texting, causing people to walk unbalanced and unsteadily.
- Injuries directly related to inattentional blindness due to cell phone use while walking has been on the rise for years.
- The percentage of pedestrians killed while using cell phones has spiked in recent years.
- Though scientifically unproven, cell phone addiction affects thousands, driving many to put themselves at risk to read a text or update their social media.
- As of 2014, the Consumer Product Safety Commission has reported a spike of emergency room visits involving people experiencing inattentional blindness due to cell phone distractions.
Though nearly all of us are guilty of inattentional blindness due to the constant chirping, buzzing and ringing coming from our pockets or purses, you must realize that no text, Tweet or call is worth a trip to the hospital, or worse. Not to mention the fact that your actions could easily put the lives of others at risk. Negligently walking into a roadway while not paying attention could cause drivers to get into dangerous accidents themselves, just in an attempt to avoid hitting you. We all have busy lives; do not be so selfish as to put your cell phone above your own life or the lives of others.