The Real Deal New York

Could traffic lights for mobile-addicts ever make it to NYC?

They're already a reality in Germany
April 30, 2016 05:00PM

A texter using the German crossing signal

A texter using the German crossing signal

There’s nothing worse than a sidewalk texter, looking down, typing away and slowing down the flow of pedestrian traffic. Well, in Germany, instead of yelling at cellphone users to move (NYC style), they are actually accommodating mobile addicts with special LED traffic lights in the pavement.

The southern German city of Augsburg recently installed traffic lights into the pavement so that pedestrians using their cell phones need never look when crossing the street.

The city is reacting to the tragic incident of a 15-year-old girl who was fatally hit by a tram when texting. The lights flash red when there is traffic so that those too busy to actually look around themselves can safely cross, according to the Telegraph.

“It creates a whole new level of attention,” said a spokesman for the city, according to German publication N-TV.

There is a lot of infrastructure in dire need of an upgrade in NYC, so it is very unlikely that this would ever happen here. So for now, it looks like New Yorkers can just keep using their shoulders to tell texters what’s what. [Telegraph]Christopher Cameron