Not walking the walk: 4 out of 10 Canadians admit to distracted walking.
Latest State Farm® survey finds 45% wear headphones while walking, another 70% admit to jaywalking
Aurora, ON (November 1, 2016) – With clocks set to 'fall back' to daylight standard time this weekend, Canadians will be getting a much needed extra hour of sleep. Although we'll be waking up to more sunlight, it also means that dusk comes sooner, making the afternoon rush more risky for drivers and pedestrians.
November is known as a very dangerous month for pedestrian injuries and fatalities. It becomes riskier for pedestrians to travel between 4:30 and 7 p.m. as drivers adjust to lower light visibility. And according to the latest national survey from State Farm Canada, it appears pedestrians may not be making it any easier on themselves.
More than 50 per cent of Canadians don't think it's more dangerous to cross the road when clocks 'fall back' or 'spring forward'. During the hours and days following the change to standard time (November 6), the risk of being struck or killed by a car increases as a result of conditions like poor visibility and sleep deprivation.
"Pedestrian injuries and deaths are preventable and both drivers and pedestrians have a role to play in ensuring safety," says John Bordignon, Media Relations, State Farm Canada. "Research and experience tells us that roads are more dangerous in the days after the clocks change. Having drivers and pedestrians being patient, focused and obeying the rules of the road are essential in making sure that you and others around you get to your destinations safely."
As more of us consume content and communicate via our smartphones it may not be surprising to note that 40 per cent of survey respondents admit to texting while walking. When you couple that with 45 per cent using headphones to listen to music and 70 per cent admitting to jaywalking, the risks to both pedestrians and motorists increase exponentially.
According to research published by the Globe and Mail, a pedestrian is hit in Toronto every 4 hours and someone dies every 10 days. A total of 163 pedestrians have been killed in Toronto since 2011, that's a 15 per cent increase compared with the previous 5 years (2007-2011).
In the U.S., the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says nearly 5,000 pedestrians were killed and an estimated 76,000 were injured in traffic collisions in 2012. That's one death every 2 hours and an injury every 7 minutes.
Both drivers and pedestrians can take steps to ensure safety like avoiding distractions behind the wheel and while crossing the street.
Simple things like looking both ways before crossing the street (20 per cent of Canadians admit to not always doing this), making eye contact with drivers before you cross, getting enough sleep, leaving on time to make it to work, school or appointments, and ensuring your headlights and windshield are clean and clear can be the difference between life and death.
This is the third of three news releases State Farm will distribute in 2016 revealing survey results and the opinions of Canadians about their driving habits and road safety.
To find out more about how State Farm works to improve road safety in Canada, please visit www.statefarm.ca/autosafety.
For further information (media inquiries only):1-866-866-7000, ext. 5553436
1-514-281-7000, ext. 5553436
About the survey
The online survey, conducted in March, 2016, polled 3,000 respondents of driving age across Canada.
This press release was distributed by State Farm Canada prior to its brand transition to Desjardins Insurance.