A lot of road safety attention has been given to distracted drivers. But what about pedestrians who have their heads buried in a mobile phone. David Brown reports on research that shows that flashing LED lights can help.
There are growing concerns about ‘distracted walking’, particularly pedestrian distraction from looking down at mobile phones,”
Flashing LED lights embedded into pavements could improve the safety of pedestrians distracted by their phones, says Australia’s Queensland University of Technology (QUT).
The research compared the reaction times for people on their phones when there was flashing lights in the pavement versus face level lights. They also analysised people just listening to music or voices from their phones
The differences aren’t huge. Reaction time for ground lights (compared to eye level lights) improved by 159 milliseconds for lights one metre away, and 43 milliseconds for lights two metres away.
More work needs to be done.
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