People are struggling to explain the alarming rise in pedestrian deaths, which reached a generation-long high in 2018. Cell phone use, especially by pedestrians, is often floated as the explanation.
It’s easy to see why this theory is popular. Pedestrian deaths started rising in 2009 about the time smart phones began becoming ubiquitous.
But distracted walking — you hear the terms “zombie pedestrians,” or “petextrians” thrown around — probably isn’t the explanation for the additional 2,000 pedestrian deaths last year compared to a decade ago.
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