Japanese City Proposes Ban On Looking At Your Phone While Walking
A Japanese city has proposed a bill to make looking at your phone while walking illegal.
Councillors in the city of Yamato, in Kanagawa Prefecture, are set to vote on new legislation that would ban staring at a device while walking.
Research carried out in the city recorded 6,000 people walking near two train stations, with 12 percent of them found to be using their smartphones while doing so.
Politicians claim there has also been an increase in the number of accidents involving people staring at their mobiles.
If the vote is passed this month, Yamato will become the first city in the country to introduce the ban, with posters being erected to raise awareness of the dangers.
According to Sora News 24, the changes would come into place on 1 July.
Speaking about the proposed law, city official Masaaki Yasumi said it's about preventing injury.
He told AFP: "The number of people using smartphones has rapidly increased and so have the number of accidents.
"We want to prevent that."
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However, Mr Yasumi admitted there won't actually be any punishment for those found to be using their devices while walking through the city's streets.
He added: "We hope the ban will raise more awareness about the dangers."
This comes after a study carried out by researchers at the University of Calgary in Canada found that phone-related injuries were on the rise, accounting for around one in 25 road safety incidents.
In the study published in the journal BMJ Injury Prevention, lead author Dr Sarah Simmons said: "Given the ubiquity of smartphones, social media, apps, digital video and streaming music, which has infiltrated most aspects of daily life, distracted walking and street crossing will be a road safety issue for the foreseeable future."
Last month, it was reported that visitors to theme parks in Japan will be urged not to scream while sitting on a roller coaster due to new health and safety guidelines following the coronavirus pandemic.
If you think of your average response to being on a roller coaster, you'd probably think 'screaming, shouting, yelling' - but all of these things should be avoided, according to the new guidelines from national theme park industry group The East Japan and West Japan Theme Park Associations.
According to CNN, the association represents several major theme parks in the country, including Tokyo Disneyland and Universal Studios Japan.
The new guidelines, given the snappy title Guidelines to Prevent the Spread of Infection of the Novel Coronavirus, will also suggest that visitors should wear protective face masks.
Featured Image Credit: PA