According to Safe Kids Worldwide, today in the United States 61 kids will be hit and 500 19 & under will be killed this year from pedestrian incidents.
“Pedestrian injury is a leading cause of injury-related death to Canadian children,” cautions Parachute Canada. The new national organization, Parachute Canada, was formed in in the summer of 2012 and united four former safety focused organizations: Safe Communities Canada, Safe Kids Canada, SMARTRISK and ThinkFirst Canada.
Distracted walking is fast becoming a major concern on a global scale for many organizations as pedestrian strikes are on the rise. As with distracted driving, distracted walking injuries and fatalities are easily preventable. The biggest challenge is helping people to appreciate the risk before they are willing to take the necessary steps to protect themselves and others. Safety concerns with distracted walking are drastically compounded when distracted walkers are on or near roadways with distracted drivers. There is also huge concern related to distracted walking on railroad tracks; the combination of visual and audible distraction from devices has already taken too many lives.
Tips to Avoid Distracted Walking
- Music: create playlists for your different activities, .e.g. exercise, walking to school, tuning out. Set the playlist and then put the phone away. Also, don’t have the volume so loud that you can’t hear what’s going on around you.
- Arrive at your destination before making a call or texting.
- If you have to text while en route, stop, stand out of the flow of other pedestrians before sending or reading your text.
- Look both ways before crossing the road…seriously, just like you were taught as a child. You never outgrow this Golden Rule.
- Continue to watch out for cars while crossing the road – don’t forget about the distracted drivers out there.
- Remind your friends & family to walk safely.
Tell us what you think about distracted walking. Is it a safety hazard? What kinds of situations are you seeing out there?