There was an article in USA Today about how “distracted walking” is taking a toll on teenagers as pedestrian injuries soar among 16-19-year-olds. The cause for distracted walking is due to electronics and handheld devices. Just about everybody walks with their head down, oblivious to their surroundings.

Today’s parents have electronics to contend with when teaching their child how to cross a street. In the past a parent taught their kid to look both ways before crossing a street. Today’s parent instructs little Timmy to: 1) stand at the curb 2) pause your conversation with grandma and put her on hold 3) take a break from texting or tweeting 4) look both ways to check for traffic 5) cross when the coast is clear 6) if you witness an accident, do not stop in the middle of the street to take a picture 7) when you have successfully crossed to the other side you may resume your texting, tweeting and talking to grandma.

For me electronics don’t make walking dangerous, my husband does. My husband is a lot taller than me and to keep up with him I need to take two steps for one of his. Should his pace be brisk then I take four steps to match his stride. It’s not a problem unless we cross a busy street. When it comes to crossing a busy street by our house, my husband plays it loose and easy – with my life. Standing at the corner he’ll yell at me, “Come on.” forgetting I need more steps than he. He’ll make it to the other side and glare at me for holding him up while I’m in the middle of the road, dodging speeding, honking cars. He’s more of a danger to me than any device could be. Why, at least if I had my cell with me, I could use it to call an ambulance after I got struck, running across the street.

Leave a Reply