Distracted driving, as a contributing cause of serious accidents, is not new but the causes of distraction have increased as our society adopts new and more pervasive technology.
Distracted Driving Back in the Day
In a Manitoba case fifty years ago, a 15-year-old boy stole a car and picked up his 14-year-old school friend for a joy ride. The 15-year-old had only driven a car once before, which his school friend had stolen from his father, and only for a few minutes, and so was a completely inexperienced driver. As they drove at 70 m.p.h. on a curve in the highway just past the local penitentiary, his friend exclaimed at the sight of car lights approaching from behind that the police were in pursuit. Continue reading
The distracted pedestrian is a common sight these days. You know the ones, walking with their eyes glued to their cell phones, frequently listening to music on headphones, or feverishly texting, oblivious to their surroundings. We have all had a laugh at videos of people falling into swimming pools and walking into poles while walking and texting. But more tragic are the increasing incidents of distracted pedestrians injured or killed in intersections, at railway crossings, and by light rapid transit. On May 16, 2017, for example, a 60-year-old woman was killed when she walked into the path of a C-Train at the Calgary Whitehorn station, spell-bound by her cell phone, and in February 2017 a 30-year-old man was killed at the same station, absorbed in his headphones and cell phone. Continue reading