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Distracted Drivers Are Just As Dangerous as Drunk Drivers

At the Law Offices of Jon Friedman, our auto accident attorneys in Portland, Oregon know that our state’s cellphone law requires the use of a hands-free accessory while using a mobile communication device while operating a vehicle. For those under 18 years of age, a mobile communication device may not be used at all while operating a vehicle.

Law or no law, for most drivers it is nearly impossible to pass another vehicle on our roadways without seeing someone staring down at their phone. When drivers do not have their complete attention on the task of operating their vehicles, people can get hurt.

If you or someone you love has been hurt or lost their life to a preventable traffic collision caused by negligence, including distracted or impaired drivers, we want to help you pursue the liable party who caused your crash.

The Dangers of Distracted Driving vs. Drunk Driving

While most people do not immediately see the correlation between impaired driving and distracted driving, both are incredibly dangerous.

Alcohol impairment, up to a blood alcohol content of .08 — the legal limit of intoxication — slows driver reactions by 12%.

While distracted driving consists of any non-driving activity that increases the risk of car accidents, including eating, drinking, grooming, changing radio stations, using a GPS, or talking to other passengers, cellphones and texting are one of the most common driver distractions.

Studies show texting while driving slows driver reactions by 35%, as the brain needs 13 seconds to refocus after cellphone use. This means the driver is distracted for much longer than it takes to dial, text, or search for a location.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that last year across the U.S., distracted driving was responsible for:

  • 13% of all police-reported motor vehicle crashes.
  • 14% of all injury crashes, injuring approximately 325,000.
  • 8% of all fatal crashes, killing 3,522 people — an increase of 12% from the previous year.

Unfortunately, other motorists are not the only ones in jeopardy when someone drives distracted. Pedestrians, bicyclists, and other non-vehicle occupants accounted for 644 fatalities caused by distracted driving throughout the country last year.

If you or someone you love has been injured or killed by a distracted driver in Oregon, contact our Portland personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Jon Friedman at (503) 242-1440 to schedule a free consultation and get the help you need to make informed decisions about the direction of your case.

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