Russian police have published a How-To-Take-Safer-Selfies guide in response to growing numbers of people being killed or injured taking the self portrait photographs.
The guide is headlined “A cool selfie could cost you your life” and comes after a 21 year old Moscow woman shot herself in the head accidentally while attempting to take a selfie, holding a loaded pistol.
In Russia this year, at least 10 people have died and 100 injured in accidents while taking selfies on their camera phones in dangerous places or hazardous situations. These range from posing with a hand grenade or a loaded gun to taking a photo on top of a railway bridge.
In what could be seen as funny if it were not about a serious problem, the selfie safety campaign uses images similar to road safety signs to show dangerous selfie taking situations – a person with a selfie stick standing on a railway line, another on top of an electricity pylon.
Tips included in the guide include the cautionary note that “a selfie with a weapon kills” , maybe a reference to an incident earlier this year in which two youths in the Urals blew themselves up taking a selfie, holding a hand grenade with the safety pin pulled out. The cell phone survived the explosion, with photos of stupidly dangerous selfie pose.
In May a teenager was electrocuted when he touched live wires while trying to take a selfie on a railway bridge.
On releasing the guide a spokesperson for the Russian Interior Ministry, Yelena Alexeyeva, said: “Unfortunately we have noted recently that the number of accidents caused by lovers of self-photography is constantly increasing. Since the beginning of the year we are talking about some hundred cases of injuries for sure.”
“The problem really exists and leads to very unfortunate consequences,” she said. “Before taking a selfie, everyone should think about the fact that racing after a high number of ‘likes’ could lead him on a journey to death and his last extreme photo could turn out to be posthumous.”
Selfie deaths are not a problem peculiar to Russia as can be seen if you type into Google search “how many people are killed in the world taking selfies.”
Mobile phone are increasingly distracting their users, with one American university even installing dedicated texting while walking lanes to avoid pedestrian injuries.Stay Connected