As personal injury lawyers we tend not to endorse any sort of crash, especially premeditated ones. But we too were anxiously awaiting the results of the “torture test,” a procedure where a new iphone 6s was cruelly dropped from the top of the Eaton Centre to the abyss below. This must be the 2015 version of the classic egg drop experiments we had to do in school.  Luckily, unlike most of those unfortunate eggs, the iphone 6s was whisked away with nary a scratch. You can read more about that here.

While we certainly do not deny the gleeful delight that comes with every Apple announcement, advancements in technology do not always bode well as far as distracted drivers and pedestrians.

According to the Ministry of Transportation:

Good drivers keep their hands on the wheel and their eyes on the road. Research shows that drivers who use cell phones are four times more likely to be in a collision than drivers who focus on the road. And when drivers take their eyes off the road for more than two seconds, their crash risk doubles.

In Ontario, it’s against the law to:

  • operate hand-held communication and electronic entertainment devices while you’re driving
  • view display screens unrelated to your driving

Examples of hand-held devices include:

iPods, GPS and MP3 players, cell phones, smart phones, laptops, DVD players

(source: Ministry of Transportation)

And while distracted driving is more dangerous than distracted walking, pedestrian fatalities have increased due to cell phone use. According to researchers at Ohio State University, the percentage of pedestrians killed while using cell phones has risen, from less than 1 percent in 2004 to more than 3.5 percent in 2010. And since 2009, pedestrian fatalities have actually increased by 15%.

Fortunately, it seems that car makers are researching different methods to prevent cell phone use while driving. But until then, we wholly endorse Philadelphia’s humorous campaign to prevent pedestrian fatalities and apply it to distracted driving as well: “It’s road safety, not rocket science.”