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Have smartphones caused a loss of pedestrian safety?

On Behalf of | Sep 8, 2021 | Motor Vehicle Accidents |

Over the years, the roads have only grown riskier for pedestrians. Due to the intense lack of protection that pedestrians have compared to other drivers or even motorcyclists, even one mistake or slip-up could end in a fatality.

This is the case recently, as CNN reports a spike in pedestrian deaths that unfortunately tie back to issues with matters like smartphones.

Smartphones linked to distracted driving and crashes

According to CNN, smartphones hold a potential link to an increase in deadly crashes with pedestrians all over the world. Smartphones play a huge part in distracted driving cases, both on the side of pedestrians and drivers.

For example, drivers often travel long distances when taking their eyes off the road. While they can do this without incident most of the time, it is still possible – and even likely – to eventually end up crashing into an object, vehicle or person. In particular, drivers distracted by their smartphones can easily run a red light or hit a pedestrian in a crosswalk that they do not see.

Pedestrians can also suffer distractions and may end up walking into a crosswalk after the light changes, or not noticing that a vehicle has run the red light and is speeding through.

Other top factors that impact safety include SUVs and warm weather, along with drivers hitting the road while intoxicated, be that through drugs or alcohol. However, smartphones rank consistently near the top of this risk list.

The true impact of distracted driving

Unfortunately, 6,500 pedestrians died in 2019, which is the highest number seen since 1988. Pedestrian deaths also make up 17 percent of all fatalities on the road, which is the highest number since 1982. The trends continue to show that use of smartphones while driving will result in this number only increasing over time.