Mobile phone addiction is becoming a real and serious threat to the wellbeing of society. People simply spend too much time on it, causing them to ignore their loved ones, peers and — like this woman found out the hard way — can even lead to death.
Wang, a 28-year-old woman from Wenzhou, located in China’s Zhejiang province fell into a river and drowned after she missed her step because she was too preoccupied with her phone.
Wang, who was a migrant worker and mother of two was walking in the middle of the road before the incident. However, as she was too preoccupied with her device, she didn’t notice when she gradually began walking towards the edge of the water.
Online surveillance footage shows Wang struggling for over a minute before she disappeared from the surface of the water. Her body was discovered after her husband Yang spotted her shoe floating on the river when he went looking for her the next morning.
Although the river was only chest-deep, the sludge at the riverbed can cause people to slip and fall. This incident has served as a wake-up call to the Chinese public as netizens took to the social media, calling for people to exercise caution when using phones.
We’d like to say that this is the first tragedy caused by phubbing (snubbing someone in favour of your smartphone), but that just isn’t the case. It used to be “don’t drive and text”, now it needs to also be “don’t walk and use your phone”.
You might think, “oh that’s not me, I only use it at the dinner table!”. What people don’t realise is that everything starts somewhere. Using them initially to avoid socially awkward situations can often lead to a reliance on the device and we all know where that leads.
An Ohio State University researcher discovered that the number of pedestrian deaths has dramatically increased over the past few years and many of which were caused by telephone distractions. The figure is expected to double by 2015.
Be mindful when using your device. It’s perfectly fine if you post that tweet an hour or even a day later. Appreciate what’s in the moment, before that moment becomes your last.