smartphone zombie texting illegal
To prevent accidents caused by smartphone zombies, Stamford in Connecticut is proposing to make phone use while walking illegal. iStock

A backlash against smartphone zombies is growing the United States with new laws being drawn up to curtail the use of a mobile phone while walking on the street.

Stamford City in Connecticut is proposing a bold law in a bid to prevent pedestrians endangering themselves or other road users as they fail to look up from their screens while strolling along busy streets.

The plan to outlaw "distracted walking" would apply to anyone either texting or talking on their phone near public highways as it looks to emulate a similar law already approved in Honolulu where pedestrians will be served $30 fines for being stuck into their smartphones, which comes into effect in October.

CBS reports the US saw an 11% increase in pedestrian fatalities last year, which equates to nearly 6,000 people killed. In the UK, the Department for Transport said a 6% rise in child deaths and injuries in 2016 could be blamed on the rise of kids being being glued to their smartphones.

If approved, the introduction of this law in Connecticut could see it roll out nationwide in the US. Stamford locals have already voiced their support for the idea who say smartphone zombies are "oblivious to cars".

"I see mothers pushing their babies, they're texting and I'm like how do y'all do all this at this intersection? That scares me," resident Dawn Thompson told CBS news.

Stamford City representative John Zelinsky who is backing the proposed law said: "I don't want any more injuries or deaths as a result of pedestrians getting hit. We've had about four or five within the past three or four years".

However, not everyone is behind the radical proposal with residents concerned about the oppressive nature of the law that could prevent them from taking important calls and messages.

"If it's an important text message or call they're getting, like what if it's too late, what if their mother's in the hospital and they need someone to call real quick," said one resident.

Zelinsky assured Stamford locals that the law would allow calls to emergency services and the fines are merely a tool to educate smartphone users and a preventative step to reducing accidents.

Several European cities have also attempted to solve the smartphone zombie syndrome by installing traffic lights into pavements so pedestrians oblivious to oncoming traffic will be able to stop before walking blindly into the road.