Yamato City is prohibiting pedestrians from using smartphones while preambulaing the vicinity public roads, squares and parks, according to a July 1 report from NDTV. It’s first publically announced ban of its kind to be imposed in Japan.
There’s no punishment foreseen in case pedasrians don’t abide by the prohibition. The ban’s supporter so all ages said they hope that the action will help to warn about the dangers of being distracted by phones, according to the report.
The city Council said it hopes people will recognize that “smartphones should not be used while in motion.”
According to the ordinance, pedestrians should stop at a place where they are not obstructing traffic if they want to use their smartphones in public spaces, such as on streets and in parks.
In January, the city conducted a study at two locations, observing a total of about 6,000 pedestrians, and found that roughly 12% of them were using their smartphones while walking. Following the survey, the draft ordinance was submitted to the city’s Council on June 1.
The city has an estimated population of 235 thousand (2017), with more than 100 thousand households.