Take your head out of your phones people.
Recently on LSU's campus, there have been several instances of students getting physically hit by moving vehicles on campus. While the circumstances of these incidents are not entirely clear, I feel they bring up an opportunity to discuss the importance of being vigilant and aware of one's surroundings, especially when crossing the road or driving a car.
The generations coming to college are increasingly attached to technology. Many people in our generation are never without their smartphones. If you look out at the sea of students filtering in and out of buildings on campus, you'll see ducked heads staring intently at 6-inch screens. Often, these people are NOT watching where they're going, so it's often up to oncoming foot traffic to avoid them. I can't tell you how many times I've physically had to step out of the way as someone who was absorbed in their Snapchat nearly walked into me.
As if walking while distracted wasn't dangerous enough, there's a new trend emerging: students not paying attention as they cross the street.
Now, LSU is a walking campus. People frequently dart across the streets despite oncoming traffic. If one is paying attention, this is just fine. However, many students remain engrossed in their cell phones while crossing the street. In these cases, it is often up to the driver to be on the lookout for such distracted students. However, the same teens that are absorbed in their cell phones while walking are the same ones driving. And so, often times, both drivers and pedestrians will be distracted by technology. That this is a recipe for disaster goes without saying, but I feel like it's time to speak up and say: "Watch where you're walking!"
Here are six easy ways to avoid getting hit by a car / hitting someone with your car:
1. Don't look at your phone while you're crossing the street
2. Look both ways (just like they taught us in kindergarten)
3. Don't dart across the street where there's no crosswalk.
4. If there is a car coming, even if you have the right of way, don't walk.
5. If you're driving, DON'T LOOK AT YOUR PHONE
6. Overall, just be aware of your surroundings
Distracted walking and distracted driving may not seem like very big deals, but safety should always be a number one priority, especially on college campuses.
For drivers: In case you forgot, texting while driving is not only dangerous, it's illegal. Car accidents frequently occur due to negligence, and you DEFINITELY do not want to be the person causing accidents.
For pedestrians: Take your head out of your phone. Next time you're on campus, take a look at the scenery instead of obsessing over the new posts on your Instagram timeline. LSU has a gorgeous campus, so if you go to school here, you should definitely take the time to soak up its beauty.
Whatever you do, don't be so distracted by your phone that you put yourself in a dangerous situation.
Have a good year, and be safe!