If the “distracted walking” measure recently proposed by a state assemblywoman will become law, people who are used to text, listen to music, or do any other task on their electronic devices as they are on the street, will face fines or even jail time, reads an article published on mashable.com.
According to experts, distracted walking is a serious and growing issue around the globe, as people become more and more dependent on their electronic devices. Reportedly, pedestrian deaths have been rising in the last couple of years, rise that coincided with states introducing bills targeting pedestrian and/or bicyclists. One of these bills, for instance, which is still pending in Hawaii, would fine people $250 is they crossed the street with an electronic device.
Until now, no states have enacted any of these laws, but some of them continue to introduce legislation every year. One of these measures recently introduced by New Jersey assemblywoman Pamela Lampitt aims to ban walking while texting and using communication devices on public roads unless they are hands-free. People who would violate this law would face fines of up to $50, 15 days imprisonment, or both. Lampitt also added that half of the fines collected would be allocated to safety education about the dangers of walking and texting.
While the views regarding this law are divided, many people agree that we should be more aware of this issue and not take it for granted that nothing bad will happen to us.
One of the main questions raised by this measure is whether it can be enforced consistently or not, as police officers have more important matters to deal with. A hearing on this proposed New Jersey measure has not yet been scheduled.