Skip to main content

You could soon be thrown in jail for texting while walking in New Jersey

texting while walking seoul
The practical consequences of mindlessly using your phone while walking down the street are pretty obvious, not to mention life-threatening. Yet so many of us end up doing it, repeatedly.

Well, if the prospect of getting hit by a car doesn’t put you off, perhaps a jail sentence will. That’s what the state of New Jersey is mulling with the introduction of a new bill that will make it illegal for people to text while walking.

The bill calls for a fine of up to $50, 15 days behind bars, or both, for people who are caught in the act, reports CBS2.

“If a person on the road — whether walking or driving — presents a risk to others on the road, there should be a law in place to dissuade and penalize risky behavior,” Democratic Assemblywoman Pamela Lampitt, who sponsored the bill, told the broadcaster.

Public opinion on the bill is decidedly more mixed compared to Lampitt’s view, with locals expressing the need for more awareness about the dangers of using a smartphone while walking.

Yet the perils of distracted walking, as it is often referred to, are becoming increasingly evident. Accidents related to the act have risen 35 percent since 2010, according to CBS2.

Additionally, we are all well aware of the threats posed by texting and walking, according to a study conducted last year. The research from the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons revealed that 78 percent of American adults now regard distracted walking as a “serious” issue. However, only 29 percent of respondents actually claimed that they did it themselves.

If the proposed New Jersey bill is passed, we will have no option but to own up to, and face the consequences of, our actions.

Editors' Recommendations

Saqib Shah
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Saqib Shah is a Twitter addict and film fan with an obsessive interest in pop culture trends. In his spare time he can be…
France outlaws texting while driving, even when you’re at a red light
ai texting and driving talking while  hands of young man on steering wheel

We know you're not so reckless as to still be texting while you're driving, but now, the French government is looking to be even more sure that this dangerous habit is eliminated for good. A court in the European nation has ruled that it is illegal for drivers not only to text while driving but basically to text while they're in the car at all. Even if you've pulled over, stopped at a red light, or have your hazard lights turned on, you better not have your smartphone in hand. If you want to run the risk, you could be looking at a fine of up to 135 euros, or about $167.

Anytime you aren't parked in a designated parking lot (or your own driveway), your phone now has to be put away in France. In addition to the fine, French drivers will also face three points on their driving license for three years (think of it as a demerit), which is the same punishment doled out to folks who are caught actually texting while driving.

Read more
It is now an offense in New Jersey to fly a drone while drunk
drone drunk new jersey 54229732  male pilot controlling with remote control

Flying a drone while drunk doesn't sound like a good idea, and that's because it's not. Piloting a heavy object with rapidly spinning propellers needs to be done with due care and attention to reduce the chances of an accident or incident taking place, whether it involves an innocent member of the public, the pilot themselves, or even the U.S. president.

Remotely controlled copters were a big hit with consumers over the holiday season, so there are now thousands of new drones buzzing in the skies over the U.S.

Read more
First Honolulu, now Chicago could hit texting walkers with fines of up to $500
chicago texting walkers 500 fine distracted

Has Honolulu started something?

Just weeks after the Hawaiian city started fining folks caught looking at their smartphone while crossing the street, officials in Chicago have made similar proposals.

Read more