The Indian city of Mumbai has established 16 no-selfie zones in an effort to curb a spike in selfie-related incidents. As the Associated Press reports, the ban applies to areas that police consider particularly dangerous, including parts of the coastline that are not protected by railings. Those who enter the no-selfie zones face a fine of 1,200 rupees ($17.50), even if they don't take any photos.
According to data from the San Francisco company Priceonomics, India accounts for 19 of the 49 selfie-related deaths recorded around the world since 2014, including two recent fatalities. This month, an 18-year-old student died after trying to take a selfie on top of a rock near a dam. He fell into the water and drowned, as did another person who tried to save him. And in January, an 18-year-old woman drowned after trying to take a selfie in front of a popular tourist site in Mumbai.
"This is a new problem for us."
"This is a new problem for us," Mumbai police spokesman Dhananjay Kulkarni told CNN this week. "We have identified spots in Mumbai. We want to restrain people from going there so that mishaps don't happen."
Other countries have taken measures to deter risk-takers from snapping photos of themselves in dangerous locations. Selfie sticks have been banned at some train stations in Japan, amid fears that they could cause people to lose their balance and fall onto the tracks. Last year, Russia launched an entire selfie safety campaign that warned of the most dangerous spots to take a selfie, including rooftops and busy roadways.
Indian Prime Minister Narenda Modi has been a frequent selfie-taker, as well, albeit in decidedly less dangerous circumstances.