Hitting back at the text-walkers

texting injuryFrom the Metro 15/05/12:

People texting while walking in Fort Lee, New Jersey, could be slapped with an $85 (£53) fine after police decided to clamp down on the activity.

It’s better than me slapping them I suppose.

The Fort Lee Police Department has issued 117 tickets for reckless walking in the past month, with offenders being forced to pay the penalty.

Officers pointed out at least 20 pedestrians who had been hit by cars while texting and walking to justify the fine.

Police chief Thomas Ripoli said: 'Pedestrians aren't watching where they're walking, they're not aware.'

However, people have only been fined if they are ignoring traffic signs or jaywalking because they are too busy looking at their phones, with walking along the sidewalk apparently still above the law.

Remember this? Sometimes falling into an open sewer just isn’t deterrent enough.

I’m still astounded at the number of people I’ve personally witnessed walk head-on into obstacles, crash into other people, trip up flights of steps and generally go sprawling all because they’re too engrossed in whatever’s on their frickin’ phone.

What’s wrong with pulling off to the side (“when it’s safe to do so” – ahem) and sending that damn text?

Most pedestrians are always far too quick to think that a) the Highway Code doesn’t apply to them and, b) other road users are the ones who should take responsibility and save them the trouble. As my old driving instructor used to say, “it takes two to have an accident”. I’m not sure that’s universally true, but I take the point.

I just wish your average text walker did, too.

Maybe criminalising text walking is the way to go over here, too?


  1. I was about to say I hate text-walkers (and I do) but then I always finish off reading the page of whatever book I was reading on the train and walk - people get annoyed with me. In fact at the beginning in my new job I almost walked into a senior colleague from another department because I wasn't looking where I was going and she was pretty mean about it. I've heard she makes people cry.

  2. Point was I kinda feel sorry for the text-walkers but at the same time the prospect of a fine will probably keep them alive.


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