The Effects of Personal Music Devices on Pedestrian Behaviour

It has been suggested that pedestrians listening to personal music devices (PMD) are more likely to be involved in accidents than those not listening to PMDs. Though it has been demonstrated that pedestrians on cell phones exhibit less cautionary behaviour when street crossing (Hatfield and Murphy, 2007; Nasar et al., 2008; Stavrinos et al., 2009), little research has been conducted with PMD users. In the present study, cautionary behaviour (e.g., looking before crossing a road) was observed and recorded for pedestrians with or without PMDs. Amongst males, pedestrians listening to PMDs displayed more looking behaviour than those not listening to PMDs. Females showed no differences between the two conditions. Thus, unlike cell phones, PMDs do not decrease the cautionary behaviour of pedestrians. This suggests that cell phones and PMDs are two different types of distractions, and this needs to be taken into account when developing methods to prevent pedestrian accidents in the future.


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  • Accession Number: 01357115
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Oct 25 2011 2:45PM