As a previous post reported, this month is Distracted Driving Awareness Month, and, at least according to one recent study, the commemoration of this month could not come at a better time for residents of Portland, Oregon.
This study showed that despite this state’s recently passing tough laws prohibiting hand-held cell phone use while behind the wheel, texting and driving is on the rise across Oregon.
According to the data, Oregonians spend over 5 percent of their time behind the wheel on their electronic devices, which, to put the number in perspective, equates to about 3 minutes of phone time for every hour of driving.
What is more disturbing is that, even in the wake of new laws, Oregon drivers were more willing to use their phones on the road than they were this time last year. This state experienced a particularly dramatic spike in phone usage behind the wheel over last year, at 42 percent.
As we have warned on many previous occasions, a distracted driver presents particular hazards to Portland-area pedestrians. After all, even if a driver takes his or her eyes off the road to pay attention to a phone call or text message for only a couple of seconds, that can be enough time to miss the fact that a pedestrian is trying to cross the street in a crosswalk right in front of the driver’s car. Serious auto-pedestrian accidents are often the end result of this dangerous behavior.
While no amount of money can undo a distracted driving accident, pedestrians who are the victims of distracted drivers can get compensation for their injuries from those responsible for them. They are encouraged to speak with a personal injury attorney about their options.