Oregon officials warn that more Oregon pedestrians than ever are dying as the result of collisions with cars. Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) reports that so far this year (2012) 52 pedestrians have died after encounters with motor vehicles. 52 beats the entire year of 2011 and, we have not reached December yet.
“The total pedestrian fatalities in Oregon for 2011 were 47 and we have one month remaining in 2012. Our goal is to do our part in keeping this number from rising anymore this year and to educate our community,” said Officer Mike Rowe, with the Beaverton Police Department.
According to ODOT many factors contribute to the deadly incidents, including distractions such as mobile phones, head sets and alcohol use. Both motorists and pedestrians bear responsibility.“It is just as important for pedestrians and bicyclists to also take steps to make sure they are safe while out and about. Bicyclists when on a public roadway are required to obey all traffic laws as if they were driving a motor vehicle. Pedestrians are also required to obey traffic control devices and enter the roadway in a way that will not cause a hazard to vehicles,” Rowe said.
Below is a list of specific laws in the Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS) for pedestrians that if they violate they could receive a traffic citation:
ORS 814.020 pedestrian fail to obey traffic control device:
- A pedestrian commits this offense if they fail to obey any traffic control devise specifically applicable to the pedestrian.
ORS 814.040 pedestrian failure to yield to vehicle:
- A pedestrian commits this offense if they suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and moves into the path of a vehicle that is so close as to constitute an immediate hazard.
- Fails to yield the right of way to a vehicle upon a roadway when the pedestrian is crossing the roadway at any point other than within a marked crosswalk or an unmarked crosswalk at an intersection.
Pedestrians can also do the following to stay safe:
- Wear bright or reflective clothing
- Don’t wear headphones or talk on a cell phone while walking
- Use crosswalks and sidewalks whenever possible ï,
- Remain alert and don’t assume that cars are going to stop
- Make eye contact with the motorist before crossing