1. nfl46's Avatar
    CHICAGO - The warning came too late for Barack Obama's adviser: Don't walk and text at the same time.

    Obama aide Valerie Jarrett fell off a Chicago curb several weeks ago while her thumbs were flying on her Blackberry.

    "I didn't see the sidewalk and I twisted my ankle," Jarrett said. "It was a nice wake-up call for me to be a lot more careful in the future, because I clearly wasn't paying attention and I should have."

    Jarrett got off easy and didn't need medical attention.

    But in an alert issued this week, the American College of Emergency Physicians warns of the danger of more serious accidents involving oblivious texters. The ER doctors cite rising reports from doctors around the country of injuries involving text-messaging pedestrians, bicyclists, Rollerbladers, even motorists.

    Most involve scrapes, cuts and sprains from texters who walked into lampposts or walls or tripped over curbs.

    Still, ER doctors who responded to a recent informal query from the organization reported two deaths, both in California. A San Francisco woman was killed by a pickup truck earlier this year when she stepped off a curb while texting, and a Bakersfield man was killed last year by a car while crossing the street and texting.

    The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has no national estimate on how common texting-related injuries are. But among the reports it has received: A 15-year-old girl fell off her horse while texting, suffering head and back injuries, and a 13-year-old girl suffered belly, leg and arm burns after texting her boyfriend while cooking noodles.

    Giancarlo Yerkes texted his way across a busy Chicago street Tuesday and escaped unscathed. But the 30-year-old advertising employee admitted he once walked straight into a stop sign while texting and bumped his head.

    Yerkes said that he texts while walking to maximize his time, and that the emergency doctors' warning probably won't stop him.

    "There's a lot of things you shouldn't do this is another one on my list," Yerkes said.

    Dr. James Adams, chairman of emergency medicine at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago, said he has treated minor injuries in several texters.

    "Common sense isn't always common," Adams said.

    Sometimes even among doctors.

    "I have to admit that I started a text while I was driving and then I said, `This is so stupid,' so I stopped," Adams said.

    Dr. Patrick Walsh, an emergency physician in Bakersfield, Calif., said he is a texter, too, but tries to remind himself to do it intelligently.

    "We think we're multitasking, but we're not," he said. "You're focusing on one task for a split second, then focusing on another one, and with something moving 40 miles an hour like a car, it just takes a couple of seconds to be hit."

    Walsh, a native of Ireland, said that on a recent visit there he noticed an effective government TV ad campaign against texting and walking, aimed at teenagers.

    The message echoes the new advice from U.S. emergency doctors.

    "We don't want to sound like some stern schoolmistress, telling people don't text on your cell phone," Walsh said. "But when you're texting, look around," he said.

    The ER group also says people should never text while driving, and should avoid talking on a cell phone or texting while doing other physical activities, including walking, biking, boating and Rollerblading.
    07-31-08 12:13 AM
  2. nfl46's Avatar
    I text and walk all the time. lol. I think I need to learn a lesson for her though.
    07-31-08 12:15 AM
  3. amazinglygraceless's Avatar
    07-31-08 12:18 AM
  4. nfl46's Avatar
    Oops, sorry. Lol. I just saw it on Yahoo.com homepage for the first time...sry!
    07-31-08 12:21 AM
  5. crackberry penguin's Avatar
    Visiting Boston this week so witnessed a dude almost get hit by a jag! He got lucky. For all you You-tubers sorry no video.
    07-31-08 03:13 PM
  6. Hrshycro's Avatar
    Hah yeah i txt and walk and shop and drive (red lights lol) and mow the lawn and txt and so far i havnt gotten hit by anything or hit anyone or walked of the sidewalk! lol!

    But then again, i dont have to look to txt anymore!
    07-31-08 04:53 PM
  7. oakie's Avatar
    i live in a world full of idiots.
    07-31-08 08:46 PM
  8. Smooth69Style's Avatar
    In the past couple of days, I was watching Fox news and they had an Illonois lawmaker there. It seems that in the state, they have several accidents from people walking and texting. The lawmakers there are trying to make it a misdemeanor to walk and text in that state. If caught there will be $25.00 ticket issued. I think this is a little extreme, but they feel it is necessary.
    08-02-08 12:04 AM
  9. cate's Avatar
    08-02-08 12:07 AM
  10. nfl46's Avatar
    My thumbs are actually hurting right now - no joke.
    08-02-08 01:24 AM
  11. MiniBB's Avatar
    The reason I don't text and drive? I walked into a tree last summer while I was attempting to walk and text. That made me realize that shifting, steering and texting was going to be more then I could handle.

    I swear that tree popped up out of nowhere!
    08-02-08 01:43 AM
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