In the PRC (Peoples Republic of China) city of Chongqing, the municipal government has designated a 30 metre “cellphone lane” for people who use their phones while walking. “The number 1 mobile phone sidewalk in China,” says a painted slogan at each end.
The Chongqing phone lane is similar to one that was painted on 18th Street in Washington DC, in July by a TV station.
It’s not clear how people so distracted by their phones that they are facing imminent death, will be able to walk within the lines of the lane or why will they not bump into each other all the time, or walk straight into the road when the lane finishes.
Casual observers of the Washington experiment suggested that many phone-users either did not see the lane or just ignored it, but perhaps the chattering Chongqing citizens will prove a little more aware than the distracted denizens of DC.
Absurdly the idea that “distracted walking”, as it is known, is a real problem seems to be spreading, presumably for those not too worried about taking shelter from floods, earthquakes or snipers.