Could Your Headphones Put You at Risk for a Florida Pedestrian Accident?

by Carmen Dellutri on January 31, 2012

Naples accident attorneyFor those of us that wear headphones or earbuds to listen to music or talk on our cell phones as we walk on the street, the results of a recent study should serve as a wake up call. It found that pedestrian accidents involving people wearing these devices have tripled in recent years.

As we discussed in a blog post last month, the number of pedestrian accident in Florida and across the country has spiked in recent years. As this study suggests, headphones may be partly to blame.

To conduct the study, the researchers searched the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System, US Consumer Product Safety Commission, Google News Archives and Westlaw Campus Research databases for reports published between 2004 and 2011 of pedestrian injuries or fatalities from crashes involving trains or motor vehicles. Cases involving headphones were further analyzed.

Here’s what they found:

  • There were 116 reports of death or injury of pedestrians wearing headphones.
  • The number of cases increased over time, from 16 in 2004 and 2005 to 47 in 2010 and 2011.
  • The majority of victims were male (68%) and under the age of 30 (67%).
  • The majority of vehicles involved in the crashes were trains (55%), and 89% of cases occurred in urban counties.
  • In total, 74% of case reports stated that the victim was wearing headphones at the time of the crash.
  • Many cases (29%) mentioned that a warning was sounded before the crash.

Based on the data, the researchers conclude, “The use of headphones with handheld devices may pose a safety risk to pedestrians, especially in environments with moving vehicles.” The researchers specifically point out that sensory deprivation and distraction caused by headphones could put us at greater risk for a pedestrian accident.

Given these alarming findings, we encourage Florida pedestrians to “unplug” while walking or jogging and always remain alert of your surroundings.

The Dellutri Law Group is focused on making bad situations better and putting lives back together. If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a Florida pedestrian accident caused by someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation.

To learn more about your legal options, contact our experienced Florida injury attorneys for a free consultation.


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