What are steps to take to promote selfie safety?

The camera feature of smartphones allows people to take pictures of themselves anywhere they go. However, phone camera use has also been linked to instances of personal injury and even death. When you snap a selfie, you should be aware of your surroundings. Taking a selfie carelessly in New York can result in serious injury or death to yourself or others close by.

Cedars-Sinai recommends that people refrain from taking a selfie in certain situations. Smartphone users should stay away from moving vehicles, like trains, cars or anything that could cause a severe injury or death on impact. Selfies should not be taken in situations that require your full attention, like riding a bicycle, driving a vehicle, boating, or crossing a street.

Taking a selfie is also unwise if you are in a dangerous and unpredictable situation. Some people like to snap a picture of themselves near wildlife or at the zoo. However, animals can act out without warning, and if you are too close to an animal while distracted, you could be seriously injured or killed. Likewise, holding onto your phone while attempting a stunt or using a firearm can also result in a tragic end.

While taking a selfie, keeping your eyes open is essential. You want to be aware of railings or barriers, as it is possible to fall over them if you are taking a selfie. Similarly, if a drop-off or ledge is nearby, you do not want to be distracted while snapping a picture, or you might fall over the edge. And if you are walking while using your phone, you could fall, slam into a physical obstacle, or slam into another person.

To show how serious dangerous selfies can be, taking a selfie contributed to 259 deaths between the years 2011 and 2017, and this does not include non-fatal injuries sustained as a result of a selfie. While selfies can preserve a fun or important moment, they are not worth the life of yourself or those around you. All smartphone users should take proper care to avoid a bad outcome.

This article is written only to provide information on the topic of personal injury. It is not to be taken as legal advice.

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