Tag: texting

This Texting-and-Driving Story from a Baltimore Mom Will Break Your Heart

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We all know that we shouldn’t be texting and driving — and, hey, now it’s even more illegal in Maryland! — but many of us do it anyway. Maybe this story will be the thing that inspires you to quit once and for all.

Baltimorean Susan Yum was driving north on 83 with her husband and two children a few days after Christmas in 2011, when they were struck from behind by an SUV going 62 mph. I’ll let her tell the next part:

Here’s How the General Assembly Is Going to Make You Really Hang Up That Cellphone

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Driving while using a hand-held phone has been a secondary offense in Maryland since 2010. It’s illegal, but you can only get a ticket for it if you’re being pulled over for something else. So it’s more like there’s a law against using a cellphone while driving with a taillight out, or using a cellphone while crossing the center line, or using a cellphone while unsafely passing. And as far as I can tell, Maryland drivers have been acting accordingly.

Six Thousand Shoes: Road Scholar Campaign Reminds Text-Happy Hopkins Students to Cross with Care

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Have you spotted the wall of yellow shoes hanging at St. Paul Street at 33rd? It’s quite stunning, actually. And hopefully a helpful reminder to student pedestrians not to text-step their way into oncoming traffic. JHU reports that at least two pedestrian accidents occurred monthly last year. The abundant display of shoes — ultimately, 3,000 pairs will perch in place, all gathered and spray-painted canary yellow by officials and volunteers — are part of a continuing JHU pedestrian safety campaign, in large part geared to stop “pedtextrians” from dreamily working their devices while they navigate an intersection. I wondered, why are certain random shoes painted bright white in the “Road Scholar” program’s wall-climbing array? Answer: They stand as a stark symbol of those pedestrians who were killed. Read more in Jill Rosen’s report in The Sun.

The Dumb Habit That Might End Up Hurting (or Embarrassing) You

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Last weekend, the New York Times published a story called “How Yoga Can Wreck Your Body,” which pointed out that yoga-related emergency room visits more than doubled between 2001 and 2002.  From 20 to 46. Yawn. (Read Baltimore’s popular yoga studio Charm City Yoga’s rebuttal to the article here.)

But what you may have missed during all the yoga-attacking (or yoga-defending) furor was a way-more-scary statistic from the same day’s paper:  in 2008, more than a thousand pedestrians had to go to the emergency room because they were somehow injured while talking or texting on their cell phones.  One thousand! And since that number had doubled each year since 2006, more recent years have probably seen even more people who were hurt by walking-while-texting.

But, hey, I’ve done it myself — probably within the past week. And since we’re probably not going to get people to stand still when they need to send a message (seeing as we can barely get folks to stop text and driving), maybe it’s best to just develop some ground rules.  That’s what filmmaker Casey Neistat does in this video. He suggests that you pay attention to your blind spot (“everywhere is the blind spot”), don’t force other pedestrians to yield to you, and — if you can — force yourself to stop and lean against a wall before you send that message. It’s safer and less irritating for you, and for everyone else on the street. Plus, think of how embarrassing it would be to have to go to the hospital for a texting-related accident.

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