South Korea is one of the countries with the highest usage of smartphones, partly because LG and Samsung come from there and also maybe because of their super fast Internet, the fastest in the world. But that may also mean that a lot of people walking around will have their noses buried into their gadgets, causing accidents and incidents. The Seoul local government is now taking measures to help lessen those instances by installing traffic signs, warning pedestrians about dangerous situation they can be in when they don’t pay attention.
This project is by the Seoul Metropolitan Government together with the National Police Agency and it involves putting up various traffic safety signs and pedestrian signs in five of the most accident-prone areas, namely Hongdae, City Hall, Yonsei University, Gangnam Station, and Jamsil Station. These areas have a high number of foot traffic as well as incidents involving smartphone usage while walking. All the signs will also have this warning: “Be careful while using a Smartphone while Walking.”
Other cities and places around the world have also been doing campaigns like this, like safety campaigns in Tokyo subway stations, parks in China and in Washington D.C with their “texting while walking lanes”, all with the purpose of getting people to be more careful and conscious. The problem is that of course people who are constantly looking at their phones will probably not look at those signs.
It is not known if this campaign will also spread to other busy areas in Seoul and even in other places around South Korea. It will also be interesting to know if there will be a significant change in the number of incidents before and after the traffic signs have been installed.