London: Over half of the pedestrians risk their lives by using a mobile phone while crossing a busy road, a study has found.

Emailing and texting while weaving in traffic has turned more commonplace, with 58 percent of men and 53 percent of women spotted doing so, daily reported quoting the survey.

According to the researchers in London, Manchester, Edinburgh and Cardiff, they also witnessed hundreds of pedestrians distracted by their iPods or MP3 players.

Almost a third admitted their safety was "extremely impaired".

One in 10 owned up to regularly crossing the road while glued to their electronic gadget. And four percent confessed to sending emails and text messages while weaving between moving cars.

Ten percent of the drivers revealed they'd had a near miss with a pedestrian using a gadget in the past five years.

John O'Roarke, for LV Car Insurance which commissioned the survey, said, "Pedestrians need to wake up to the dangers while using them."