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Distracted Walking: Many Do It, Most Deny it

Distract walking could lead to various collisions

(Mirror Daily, United States) – The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons (AAOS) have tackled a very important issue nowadays, specifically distracted walking: many do it, most deny it. How many of us have been involved in accidents due to staring at our phones while walking? And how many of us have seen it in others?

The AAOS conducted a survey that tried to assess the differences between both answers. They found discrepancies in the results that led to the simple conclusion that most people do it, but a majority deny it. The researchers polled around 6,000 American adults upon their own habits and what they have seen in others on the streets.

Apparently, 78% of the participants considered distracted walking or ‘digital deadwalkers’ to pose serious risks. They believed it was a severe issue to take into consideration in today’s digital age. It could lead to accidents, missing traffic, stoplights, obstacles or other pedestrians. This may result in injuries that could range from scrapes and bruises, to more serious fractures and broken bones.

Previous studies have shown that ‘digital deadwalkers’ often spend 2 seconds more at every intersection, and are 400% likelier to miss important traffic signs. Those who indulge in ‘distracted walking’ walk slower and often not in a straight line.

However, while those are the claims of the AAOS, only 43% of the respondents agreed that distracted walking may pave the way for serious injuries. That means that less than half the people out there believe there’s risk of walking with their head glued to their phones, talking, texting, playing, or listening to music.

Interestingly, 74% of the participants noticed that people around them are involved in the aforementioned ‘distracted behavior’. However, only 29% of them admitted that they do the same thing. The discrepancy indicates that many of them see others doing it, while not recognizing the same behavior in themselves. It only paints a clearer picture that the participants were more likely to ignore this tendency and blame others for accidents.

The numbers were highest for New Yorkers on both ends. Around 86% of them believed ‘distracted walking’ is a serious issue, while the highest number, 34%, admitted to doing it themselves. But, it’s human nature to blame others for loss, and this particular activity is no different.

According to Dr. Alan Hilibrand from the AAOS, there are increased and growing numbers of accidents among pedestrians, including tripping, falling down the stairs, collisions with others, or stepping into unsafe traffic. During the busy and crowded holiday season, they expect the rates to grow even higher.

That is why the AAOS urges all pedestrians to be careful and not participate in ‘distracted walking’, as it may result in injury.

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