The smartphone is one of the most popular devices, with the average smartphone usage at 162 min/day and the average length of phone usage at 15.79 hr/week. Although significant concerns have been made about the health effects of smartphone addiction, the relationship between smartphone addiction and accidents has rarely been studied. We examined the association between smartphone addiction and accidents among South Korean university students. Methods: A total of 608 college students completed an online survey that included their experience of accidents (total number; traffic accidents; falls/slips; bumps/collisions; being trapped in the subway, impalement, cuts, and exit wounds; and burns or electric shocks), their use of smartphone, the type of smartphone
content they most frequently used, and other variables of interests. Smartphone addiction was estimated using Smartphone Addiction Proneness Scale, a standardized measure developed by the National Institution in Korea. Results:
Compared with normal users, participants who were addicted to smartphones were more likely to have experienced any accidents (OR = 1.90, 95% CI: 1.26–2.86), falling from height/slipping (OR = 2.08, 95% CI: 1.10–3.91), and bumps/ collisions (OR = 1.83, 95% CI: 1.16–2.87). The proportion of participants who used their smartphones mainly for entertainment was significantly high in both the accident (38.76%) and smartphone addiction (36.40%) groups. Discussion and conclusions: We suggest that smartphone addiction was significantly associated with total accident, falling/slipping, and bumps/collisions. This finding highlighted the need for increased awareness of the risk of accidents with smartphone addiction.