You Could Now Get a Ticket for ‘Distracted Walking’

If this bill in Connecticut passes, the guilty could receive a fine for putting themselves and others in danger

We all know about the dangers of distracted driving — and the risks this action poses to so many.

But now a state legislature is recognizing the increasing problems presented by distracted walking — and trying to take action against it.

A bill before the Connecticut state legislature would let police issue a $20 ticket to those who are guilty of distracted walking while crossing the street — whether they’re talking on their cellphones or texting and potentially putting themselves and others in danger.

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Some people are “just completely unaware of their surroundings,” Selah Kwak of West Hartford, Connecticut, commented to Fox13.

This is why some people feel that police ticketing for this “crime” isn’t a bad idea.

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“If we’re going to hold drivers to a certain standard to not be on their phones while driving, which is obviously a good idea, then we should also do that for pedestrians,” Jessica Tagliarini, also of West Hartford, Connecticut, told Fox13.

The bill this week was approved by members of the General Assembly’s Transportation Committee.

“This is really about trying to protect [people] who should be aware when they’re putting themselves in front of a two- or three-ton vehicle barreling at them … If they’re not paying attention, they will lose that battle,” state Sen. Carlo Leone (D-Stamford) and co-chair of the committee told The Hartford Courant.

But state Sen. Tony Hwang (R-Fairfield) queried whether lawmakers were actually seeking to legislate something that should be common sense, as The Courant also noted.

He questioned if the new law would be enforced: “We’ve imposed bills, rightfully so, on distracted driving. We don’t enforce it enough. And here we go creating another set of bills that says you shouldn’t be doing this. But how practical is it for us to enforce it?”

The issue now goes to the Senate for a vote.

Tell us your thoughts on this in the comments section below.

meet the author

Maureen Mackey served as editor-in-chief and managing editor of LifeZette for nearly five years. Before that, she held senior editorial positions at major publications, helping The Fiscal Times win a MIN Award for Best New Site as managing editor and Reader's Digest win an American Society of Magazine Editors Award for General Excellence as book editor. Her work has appeared in Real Clear Politics, CNBC, A Fine Line, AARP Magazine, Yahoo Finance, MSN, Business Insider, and The Week, among other outlets. She is a member of the Newswomen's Club of New York and the American Legion Auxiliary.

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