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Walking and texting dangerous? l Kirkland WA Pedestrian Injury Attorney

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Walking and texting or talking on your cell can be dangerous. Reports show increases in pedestrian injuries in recent years from talking and texting while walking.  Distracted driving has received a lot of attention lately, but it's not the only area affected by the ever present cellphone.  Distracted walking is out there too.

People walk into parked cars, light poles, trip over roots in sidewalks, all while engrossed in a cellphone conversation or writing a text.  A little over 1,000 pedestrians visited emergency rooms in 2008 because they got distracted, tripped and fell or ran into something while talking or texting on a cellphone.  Which was double the numbers in 2006 and 2007 according to a study conducted by Ohio State University.

Examples in the OSU study included a 16 year-old who walked into a telephone pole and got a concussion; 28 year-old man who tripped and broke a finger, and a 68 year-old man who fell off a porch, spraining a thumb and ankle, all while using a cellphone. 

A Western Washington University study found that using phones decrease awareness and cognition.  The study did a test involving a person dressed up as a clown riding a unicycle riding around a central campus square.  About half the people walking the the square by themselves said they saw the clown; the number was a little higher for people walking in pairs.  But only 25% of people talking on a cellphone said they saw the clown.  A term commonly applied to this is "inattention blindness," meaning a person can be looking at an object but fail to register it or process what it is. 

Scary concept when you think about the driving distracted scenario!

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