Ears Open

by Bea | August 23rd, 2011 | Mind & Body

Did you know that last year was the first year in four years that the pedestrian death toll went up?

Though there are no hard facts for the cause behind the rise in death toll, I do have a pretty logical guess: headphones. Headphones typically make people completely unaware of their surroundings. Yes, they can still see what is going on, but seeing is not everything, and we all know that. Also, you may think that you see everything, but music tends to zone people out as well, and you do not truly know what is around you at all points in time. Without having the ability to hear everything, the chance of being hit by an automobile greatly increases. Not only that, but your chance of being hit by anything in general goes up. This includes bikers, other people, the tram, and more.

With your headphones in, you tend to tune out the noise. Music in your ears is dangerous, because you might not be able to hear an oncoming car or a vicious attacker. Music will flood your brain with thoughts, and you will not be 100% alert when you have your ear buds in. Yes, something that simple can be a really serious issue.

I never run with both of my head phones in.  I typically do not even use head phones.  I like having the ability to hear the people around me, and to hear that a biker is going to be on my left.

There have been plenty of studies showing how distracting technology can be. In fact, in some places like New York, they are even trying pass a bill that would prohibit the use of any kind of electronic device while crossing the street. Actually, in Oregon and Virginia, bikers can be charged up to $90 in fees  for riding under the influence of technology. That is correct, it is not a DUI, but it is similar to one.

It is always safer to have the ability to be constantly aware of your surroundings. It keeps you safe, and that is what we care about the most.

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