Experimental Study on the Effect of Using Smartphones on Pedestrian Flow in Straight Corridors


  • Xudong Li State Key Laboratory of Fire Science, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei, China
  • Weiguo Song State Key Laboratory of Fire Science, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei, China
  • Jun Zhang State Key Laboratory of Fire Science, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei, China




pedestrians, crowds


With the development of science and technology, smartphones are widely used in people’s daily lives. An interesting phenomenon is that many pedestrians use smartphones while walking in the public places, which not only harm and even kill in some cases, but also affect the pedestrian traffic safety. At present, most studies focus on the pedestrians in the normal state that they don’t use phones while walking. Few research has been done on the pedestrian flow when they use phones. Therefore, the experiment that the pedestrians use phones while walking in straight corridor was conducted to study the movement characteristics and compared with the normal one. From the trajectories, the lane formation can be found in all experiments and the trajectories when they use phones are more chaotic. When pedestrians distract themselves by using phones, they walk more slowly and the flow is lower, leading to the longer egress time to pass the corridor. The distance from the boundary is defined as the shortest distance between the pedestrians and the wall. When they use phones, they try to avoid collision with the wall and walk away from the wall, so the distance is further than the normal one. The nearest pedestrian distance is defined as the nearest distance among all pedestrians. When they use phones, they distract themselves and don’t have enough time to avoid collision with others, so the nearest pedestrians distance is closer than the normal one. Our findings maybe a new insight for pedestrian flow when they distract themselves by using the phones, talking with others and thinking deeply, which can enrich empirical data and contribute to the simulation model.


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How to Cite

Li, X., Song, W., & Zhang, J. (2022). Experimental Study on the Effect of Using Smartphones on Pedestrian Flow in Straight Corridors. Collective Dynamics, 6, 1–15. https://doi.org/10.17815/CD.2021.120



Pedestrian and Evacuation Dynamics 2021