Your phone rings, you change the radio station, kids cry in the back seat…your attention veers off of driving and off of the road. This is called “distracted driving.”

A study commissioned by Oregon Department of Transportation and conducted by Southern Oregon University found:

* 84 % of passengers feel uncomfortable riding with a distracted driver

* 44 of the same people admitted to driving distracted with their own passengers

* 75% of those surveyed admitted to driving distracted alone (www.oregon.gov/odot/comm).

Distracted driving is called one of the “five fatal driving behaviors.”

What are the leading causes of distracted driving?

Some situations are hard to prevent, but many distractions are controllable.

Cell phones are the biggest distraction. In an effort to bring awareness to fellow Oregonians’, Oregon State Police Captain Dave Anderson said, “We’re asking drivers to put down their phones, for safety’s sake.”

There IS more traffic. More people are moving to Central Oregon; the population of Deschutes County has increased about 11% in the past 5 years, so more people are driving and the number of distracted drivers has increased proportionally.

Central Oregon poses unique distractions: construction zones, pedestrians, visiting drivers, traffic congestion and various speed limits, winter snow and ice…even our beautiful views can be hazards. The slightest distraction can cause an accident. . If you combine these “natural” driving distractions with the use of a cell phone, you increase your risk of an accident by 4 to 8 times…about the same as if you were driving drunk (University of Utah, David Strayer).

Recent speed limit increases add to the risk. With more vehicles traveling at a higher rate of speed, it is more important than ever to stay off the phone and focus on the vehicle and the road.

So what can you do? Focus on the road.

So what can you do? Focus on the road.

Do your multi-tasking outside of the car. Avoid eating, applying make-up, reading or cell phone use while driving.

Use your cell phone for emergency situations only.

If you are drowsy, pull off the road.

Limit the number of passengers and the level of activity inside the car

Sharpen your driving skills. Deschutes County offers skid car training classes. Visit http://www.deschutes.org/administration/page/skidcar-training

We have a responsibility to ourselves, our loved ones and the drivers around us to drive alert and abide by the traffic laws. The team of Cascade Security Solutions asks you to share this information with your families, staff and community to reduce distracted driving and save lives.

The following websites were used to gather data and information to write this blog.

AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety)  (www.enddd.org)

For a full description of ORS 811.507, operating a motor vehicle while using mobile communication devise, visit http://www.oregonlaws.org/ors/811.507

www.census.gov

http://www.deschutes.org/

https://www.oregon.gov/ODOT/COMM/Pages/nr16040502.aspx

http://www.oregonlaws.org/ors/811.507.

http://www.deschutes.org/administration/page/skidcar-training

#distracteddriving, #centraloregon, #drivingtips #cascadesecuritysolutions

 

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