The Dutch Are Testing LED Crosswalk Lines to Prevent Pedestrians From Getting Run Over

Could this actually prevent smartphone zombies from walking into traffic?

When your nose is buried in a smartphone while crossing busy city streets, you’re going to get hit by a car. To limit that, a Dutch city is testing a system that lights up a line on the ground informing pedestrians when it is safe to cross the street. 

Together with HIG Traffic Systems, the Dutch city of Bodegraven is testing Lightlines, or Lichtlijn. The system illuminates a strip of LEDs strategically placed in the line of sight of those who would otherwise be distracted by their phones while crossing the street. The lights turn red or green with the walk signals.  

“Social media, games, WhatsApp and music are major distractions in traffic,” said town alderman Kees Oskam to Dutch News. “We may not be able to change this trend, but we can anticipate problems.”

Currently, the lights are installed at just one crossing that is located near a handful of schools. If the test is successful, HIG will try to expand by working with other town governments.

Check out the video below for some shots of the light strips in action.