We oftentimes talk about the dangers associated with distracted driving — taking the lives of thousands every year. But did you know that distracted pedestrians are facing the very same risks?
According to a recent study from the Ohio State University, there were nearly 2,000 pedestrians who found themselves in an E.R. because of a distracted walking-related accident. Unfortunately, those are only the ones that were reported. Researchers believe that these accidents are properly recorded in the first place and that’s why it’s tough to pinpoint the seriousness of the problem. Researchers actually estimate that there are roughly 2 million people each and every year who are involved in a distracted walking accident.
Our Fort Myers injury lawyers understand that Florida continues to be one of the most dangerous states in the country for pedestrian accidents. Our beautiful weather, our growing populations, our exercising habits and our accessible attractions make it easily understood why there are so many people out walking — both residents and visitors.
“The role of cell phones in distracted driving injuries and deaths gets a lot of attention and rightly so, but we need to also consider the danger cell phone use poses to pedestrians,” said Jack Nasar, co-author of the study.
Unfortunately, these accidents are on the rise, too. Since 2005, the number of distracted-walking accidents has actually doubled. But we get it. Smartphones are the key to society. We’re all constantly working and keeping in touch with loved ones, but there’s no reason to jeopardize our safety for it. If you’ve got a phone call, email or text message that needs your immediate attention, just stop and reply. There’s no use in walking into traffic while doing it — unless you’re trying to make a costly visit to the emergency room.
How serious is the problem in Florida?
According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV), there were more than 7,000 pedestrian accidents in the state of Florida in 2011. That’s more than 20 pedestrian accidents a day, and those were only the ones that were reported.
In these accidents, there were nearly 500 pedestrians killed and another 6,000 injured.
And unfortunately, Lee County continues to be one of the most dangerous in the state. Hang up the phone. If you’ve got a text message, a phone call or an email that you need to attend to, stop, have a seat and deal with it safely away from the road. You don’t want to walk off a curb, walk into a pole or walk into oncoming traffic because of it. These are risks that can be easily avoided. Stay safe out there.
It’s time we hang up the phone (at least while walking along our roadways) and pay attention to what’s going on around us. It’s a beautiful day. Look up and look around (and watch out for that car).
If you or a loved one has been injured in a pedestrian accident, call us today for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your case. Call 1-800-283-2900.
More Blog Entries:
Local Woman Killed in Fort Myers Pedestrian Accident, Florida Injury Lawyer Blog, June 14, 2013
Fort Myers Beach Pedestrian Accidents an Ongoing Risk, Florida Injury Lawyer Blog, February 4, 2013