We've all witnessed a lady at a stoplight touching up her lipstick or applying mascara. Maybe some of you have even done it yourself. You think to yourself; it's okay so long as my vehicle isn't moving. Technically, you're just sitting there waiting for the light to turn so it's not a big deal if you use that time to finish getting ready, right? Wrong. Accidents can occur whether you're moving or not.
By now, the Pokémon Go craze has spread almost everywhere in the nation, including Baltimore. While this popular game - which requires players to capture animated Pokémon characters projected on their cellphone screens amid the player's actual surroundings - has coaxed countless kids and adults off the couch, it has also gotten several people injured. In fact, the internet is rife with stories of people walking into traffic, trees and even off rocky ledges as they try to catch Pokémon on their cellphones.
Many states, including Maryland, have laws prohibiting texting and using a handheld cell phone while driving. But the problems of distracted driving, which killed over 200 people in Maryland in 2011, go beyond the use of electronic devices, especially for teens. According to a recent study published in the Journal of Transportation Safety and Security, 27 percent of teens reported that they sometimes change their clothes and shoes while driving. Other behind-the-wheel activities included changing contact lenses, doing homework or putting on makeup.
As many Maryland residents have already learned, distracted driving is a growing danger on the roads of America. The high-technology world of instant text and voice communication that we live in today has caused unforeseen side effects to those who operate motor vehicles and utilize the highways or streets. Even pedestrians and bicyclists are at greater risk than ever before because of the increasing prevalence of distracted driving.