The Problem of Distracted Pedestrians

A piece from NPR’s Weekend Edition explores the safety challenge of pedestrians who are distracted by cell phones, texting or simply listening to MP3 players, including the sad story of a teen whose iPod was so loud he didn’t hear the freight train that killed him.

Now I’ve been know to walk the streets of Portland reading e-mail on my iPhone. Although I try hard to lift my eyes up when I step off a curb, I’m not sure that I could say I’m always 100% as focused as I should be.

And I’m a podcast junky (all forms of transportation and public policy podcasts) so there’s frequently an earbud in my ear (although since the spoken word does not demand stereo, I purposefully keep one ear bud-free).

How do we high-bandwidth information consumers stay safe out there?

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