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ODOT: Alcohol A Factor In Increase In Pedestrian Deaths

OPB | Nov. 28, 2012 3:21 p.m. | Portland

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The Oregon Department of Transportation has recorded 55 pedestrian deaths so far this year. That exceeds last year’s total of 47 pedestrian fatalities. ODOT wants to work with drivers and pedestrians to make the roads safer.

Oregon Transportation Department says several factors have caused the increase in pedestrian deaths this year.

Spokesman Don Hamilton says drinking plays a big role.

“Alcohol is often a factor both among pedestrians and among motorists, this is one of the things we’ve noticed in our research in the past. When we see a spike in the number like were seeing this year, we’re going to look very carefully, find out what the individual cases was for each of these, track it, and see if we can find a pattern.”

Hamilton says in December ODOT will put extra emphasis on the dangers of driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol.

He adds that it’s important for pedestrians and cyclists to wear bright colors or lights at night so that drivers can see them.  

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