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A suspected drunk driver has hit and killed a man who was walking across Division Street

Posted by on September 6th, 2016 at 1:26 pm

The intersection of Division at SE 124th near where Damon Burton was killed.

The intersection of Division at SE 124th near where Damon Burton was killed.

A man was arrested yesterday morning for recklessly driving his car into a person who was trying to cross the street in southeast Portland.

40-year-old Clifford Eugene Perry Jr. faces charges of Manslaughter in the Second Degree, Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants (DUII) and Reckless Driving. Perry will be arraigned in Multnomah County Court today.

On Sunday evening Perry was driving westbound on Division near 124th (map) “at a high rate of speed” (according to Portland Police investigators) prior to coming into contact with 61-year-old Damon Patrick Burton. Perry, who the police suspect was drunk, then continued driving on Division until crashing into a gas station at 122nd. Burton lived in the neighborhood and was trying to cross Division from south to north prior to being hit.

(The police have not said where exactly Burton was crossing from, but it appears from photos taken by other news outlets that Burton was likely crossing at 124th.)

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Division is one of the deadliest streets in Portland and has been a part of the bureau of transportation’s High Crash Corridor program for years. According to PBOT data Division has 50 percent more walking-related collisions than average.

The cross-section of Division where Burton was killed is daunting. He was trying to cross over nine lanes — two auto parking lanes, two bike lanes, four standard vehicle lanes, and a center turn lane.

According to the city of Portland’s Vision Zero Crash Map, this same section of Division has been the scene of two fatal and three serious injury collisions since 2005.

Mr. Burton is the 31st 32nd person to die on Portland streets so far this year and the ninth person to be struck and killed while walking. 37 people died on Portland’s streets in all of 2015 and there were 10 fatalities that involved someone walking. If this pace continues we would have 47 deaths this year which would be the most since 1998. This is also the second fatal collision involving a walker on Division this year. A person was killed while crossing Division at 156th on January 12th, which spurred PBOT to install a rapid flash beacon at that location shortly thereafter.

This latest fatality comes two days after advocates joined with City Commissioner Steve Novick and other agency leaders at a “Rally to end unsafe streets.” Burton’s death also comes as many in the community are reeling following a spate of preventable roadway tragedies that have taken the lives of vulnerable users.

19-year-old Larnell Bruce was intentionally struck and killed with a car by a man with ties to white supremacist groups on August 10th in Gresham; 15-year-old Fallon Smart was hit and killed by a reckless driver on Hawthorne Blvd on August 19th; and 15-year-old Bradley Fortner is still in the Intensive Care Unit with a brain injury suffered after being hit by someone driving on Columbia Blvd while walking to school in north Portland on August 30th.

On Saturday in Beaverton a 61-year-old woman was hit and killed by a motor vehicle operator while jogging. She was trying to cross NW Baseline at 166th.

UPDATE, 9/6 at 9:00 pm: Another person has been hit on Division near this same intersection. It happened Tuesday night. Here is the police statement:

On Tuesday September 6, 2016, at 8:44 p.m., East Precinct officers responded to the report that a pedestrian was struck by a driver at Southeast 148th Avenue and Division Street and that the driver fled the area.

Officers and medical personnel arrived and located the male pedestrian suffering from traumatic injuries. He was transported by ambulance to a Portland hospital for treatment and his current condition is not known.

Preliminary information indicates that after striking the pedestrian, the driver fled the area but then returned and was providing aid to the pedestrian. Prior to police arrival, the driver left again and a female came to the scene and drove away in the suspect vehicle.

Officers engaged the female driver in a short pursuit before she crashed at Southeast 150th Avenue and Main Street, where she was taken into custody.

Officers are searching the area for the driver, described as a Hispanic male in his early-40s.

Traffic Division officers are at the scene conducting an investigation.

UPDATE, 9/22: Perry was charged (quote below). According to East PDX News he posted bail.

Perry was arraigned Tuesday on second-degree manslaughter, driving under the influence of intoxicants and reckless driving charges, court records show. He’s being held in Multnomah County’s Inverness Jail on $255,000 bail, according to jail records.

— Jonathan Maus, (503) 706-8804 – jonathan@bikeportland.org

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80 Comments
  • Avatar
    bradwagon September 6, 2016 at 1:46 pm

    Incredible the distance between marked crossings in this area. There is a marking crossing with center Island just before 129th but 124th is just about in the middle of a 1/4 mile drag strip of 4 lane road. Which is sadly nothing compared to the section between 96th and 112th: 3/4 mile, 4 bus stops, no marked crossings (at least per recent google image). If cars catch a couple green lights this area essentially becomes a freeway.

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      Eric Leifsdad September 6, 2016 at 7:17 pm

      Let’s talk about the distance between large obstacles — the next closest thing to hit was a gas station 2 blocks away? I think obstacles could do more to stop drunkenly and/or recklessly driven cars than marked crossings. Besides, they’re already marked with streets. Do drivers have trouble seeing streets now?

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    Chris I September 6, 2016 at 2:11 pm

    Division is slated to get either BRT or LRT at some point. Center-running rapid transit would transform this street, providing crossing refuges and calming traffic. The construction would be an opportunity to create marked crossings every few blocks, and would significantly narrow the perceived size of the street, effectively calming traffic (similar to outer-Burnisde, but with 2 motor vehicles lanes in each direction.

    This street, as configured now, is just terrible.

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    • Adam H.
      Adam H. September 6, 2016 at 2:42 pm

      The most recent version of the plans do not call for any dedicated bus lanes anywhere along Division. It’s not really a BRT line anymore, but an express bus.

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      • Hello, Kitty
        Hello, Kitty September 6, 2016 at 2:51 pm

        It’s not even an express bus… it’s just a longer bus with thinned out stops.

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        Todd Boulanger September 6, 2016 at 5:59 pm

        Sadly, if this is true II have not been following TRIMETs BRT efforts…then TRIMET has copied the worst design aspects of CTRANs B[R]T in Vancouver.

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        • Hello, Kitty
          Hello, Kitty September 6, 2016 at 6:01 pm

          But don’t worry!!! The buses will be painted a different color, so you’ll know it’s something special.

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      Spiffy September 6, 2016 at 2:47 pm

      I know they’re pushing for a bastardization of BRT on Division but I thought they gave that up after the community overwhelmingly pointed out the issues and redirected them to Powell for the project where there’s more room in the inner core…

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      • Adam H.
        Adam H. September 6, 2016 at 2:49 pm

        Powell is a complete non-starter at this point. At Metro/TriMet’s most recent open house on this project, the new route is entirely on Division.

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          David Hampsten September 6, 2016 at 3:09 pm

          “Enhanced local bus” on “Inner” Division, west of 82nd. This crash was on outer Division, where BRT is still an open possibility.

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          • Adam H.
            Adam H. September 6, 2016 at 3:12 pm

            It’s a possibility and there is certainly room, however when I spoke with someone at the most recent open house on this project, they informed me that dedicated lanes on outer Division are highly unlikely.

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            Spiffy September 7, 2016 at 8:44 am

            I guess they could do BRT to Gresham instead of to Portland, but I don’t see that happening… there’s no room for BRT on inner Division, and I doubt ODOT wants to give up half their road to put it on Powell…

            sure we could put it on Burnside or Sandy but it’s not needed there…

            so until PBOT can wrest control of our roads from ODOT we won’t have BRT…

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            • Hello, Kitty
              Hello, Kitty September 7, 2016 at 9:34 am

              Even if Powell were a PBOT facility, they’d never agree to a dedicated bike lane.

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      David Hampsten September 6, 2016 at 2:47 pm

      It’s because of the prospect of BRT that several safety projects on outer Division have been delayed (again). Outer Division has a major fresh water aqueduct under it to 162nd, along with Caruthers and Powell, from the Bull Run reservoir, so you will never likely see LRT on those streets.

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    B. Carfree September 6, 2016 at 2:40 pm

    I’m going to assume this alleged drunk driver has prior DUII’s. In SoCal, several DA’s are requiring convicted drunk drivers to sign a document that guarantees that if they drive drunk and kill someone, they will be convicted of second degree murder.

    Frankly, I think Oregon needs to go a step further and have every motorist sign such a document as a condition of being licensed. Then we just need to charge them with attempted murder if they drive drunk and actually do some traffic law enforcement so we catch them before they kill.

    Instead, we give drunk drivers a complete pass for their first conviction each few years and a near pass for the second. It’s like we’re trying to train people to drive drunk.

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      Ted Timmons (Contributor) September 6, 2016 at 5:41 pm

      I don’t see any priors for this person, in Oregon at least.

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        B. Carfree September 6, 2016 at 9:36 pm

        And you won’t see any priors as long as he keeps his rate of getting caught drunk driving at levels that let him do the diversion.

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      Eric Leifsdad September 6, 2016 at 7:34 pm

      The crosswalk enforcement actions regularly find almost one each drunk, without a license and/or insurance, or with outstanding warrants. This, even in the middle of the day, with the warning signs and broadcast news.

      As for policy changes, we could start by decriminalizing drunk biking proportionately to the amount of likely damage. Maybe some Portland by Bicycle skills courses like how to know when you’re too drunk to ride, letting your bike walk you home, techniques for safely crossing the street when you can’t tell a headlight from a streetlight. <– too every objection about these "ridiculous" suggestions, I point at what ridiculousness we have now: drunks in speeding cars. Even electric-assist tadpole-trike velomobiles crashing into trash cans at 2:15am would be a welcome menace indeed.

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      • Hello, Kitty
        Hello, Kitty September 6, 2016 at 10:35 pm

        >>> As for policy changes, we could start by decriminalizing drunk biking proportionately to the amount of likely damage. <<<

        Why should skinny people get a free pass? Yes, even drunks in speeding cars may be preferable to the discriminatory policies you propose.

        Electric-assist tadpole-trike velomobiles crashing into trash cans at 2:15am is the story of my life.

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        Spiffy September 7, 2016 at 9:29 am

        “skills courses like how to know when you’re too drunk to ride”

        they already have that, it’s called: falling over

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          Eric Leifsdad September 10, 2016 at 3:24 pm

          It’s much safer and more fun to learn how to do this using city-provided beer while wearing your city-cycling-promotions-required helmet.

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      Gary B September 7, 2016 at 9:02 am

      B. Carfree
      Frankly, I think Oregon needs to go a step further and have every motorist sign such a document as a condition of being licensed.Recommended 12

      Or, we could pass a law that says that.

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  • Adam H.
    Adam H. September 6, 2016 at 2:47 pm

    PBOT knows how to fix this street buys refuses. Instead of band-aid solutions like rapid-flash beacons, Division needs a road diet from it’s current seven (!) lanes for cars. Remove the painted door-zone bike lanes and use the space to widen the sidewalks. Most businesses along this stretch have their own lots, and not surprisingly, the on-street parking sits mostly unused. Get rid of the parking lanes and replace them with protected bike lanes. Remove two travel lanes and convert them to center-running bus-only lanes. Finally, remove the center turn lane.

    If PBOT claims they can’t do this because the road has too much volume and will affect traffic congestion, you’ll know where their true priorities lie.

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    • Hello, Kitty
      Hello, Kitty September 6, 2016 at 2:58 pm

      Where do their “true priorities” lie? You say that like there are not legitimate competing needs for this and other roadways. It’s not even clear that the people who live and work in that area would support your vision.

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        David Hampsten September 6, 2016 at 3:06 pm

        They might, actually. East Portland did an all-household survey a couple years ago. Folks cited Division and 122nd as among the most dangerous streets and requested many more ped islands, about every quarter mile. Most of the (very heavy, 40,000+ cars/day) traffic is either inner Portlanders trying to get to Gresham or folks in Gresham trying to get to I-205. Local traffic is pretty minimal.

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        • Hello, Kitty
          Hello, Kitty September 6, 2016 at 3:15 pm

          So how about this for a call to action:

          Instead of band-aid solutions, PBOT needs to work closely with residents, businesses, and other members of the community along this stretch of Division, and create and implement a plan for improving this long-neglected stretch of road. In order to allow prioritization of this work, I’m willing to delay implementation of my pet project for another couple of years.

          Let the people who use the street set the priorities. Do they want fewer travel lanes? Dedicated bus lanes? Bike lanes? Narrower lanes? More signals? More crosswalks? More car lanes?

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          • Adam H.
            Adam H. September 6, 2016 at 3:23 pm

            Based on your list of people who should be involved, my wife who works at a school down the street from here would not be included in these discussions and outreach. This is the primary problem I have with the allowing the neighborhood to influence the decision, as this often leaves out people who work in the area or have to walk or bike through for whatever reason.

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            • Hello, Kitty
              Hello, Kitty September 6, 2016 at 3:35 pm

              I believe people who live in a place (rent or own) should have primacy, followed by people who own businesses, followed by people who work. Waaaaay down at the bottom of the list are people who pass through as part of their commute from one place to another.

              So I think your wife should have a say, but maybe not as much as the people who actually live there.

              And yes, I do understand this viewpoint in some ways directly contradicts another I have, which is that there is value in continuous facilities, and we need better bike and transit facilities everywhere. I am a flawed Kitty.

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                jeff September 6, 2016 at 4:30 pm

                what does that have to do with drunk driving?

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              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty September 6, 2016 at 5:23 pm

                I think drunk drivers should also have a lowish level of input into street planning efforts.

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              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty September 6, 2016 at 5:30 pm

                At least until they sober up.

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            • Avatar
              David Hampsten September 6, 2016 at 8:59 pm

              Adam H & Hello, Kitty, I think it’s great you want to see some changes to this location and are willing to work with the community to do so. This section of Division is the border of two neighborhoods, Mill Park http://millpark.eastportland.org/ to the north and Powellhurst-Gilbert http://pgpride.org/ to the south. PGNA is not only the most populous neighborhood in all of Portland (between 25,000 and 31,000, depending on overlap areas), it is also among the easiest to become a member of, as they’ll sign up anyone who “wants to be affiliated” with the neighborhood, not just residents and property owners. In addition, this intersection falls within the Division-Midway Alliance neighborhood prosperity initiative (NPI – a mini-urban renewal district). They can be contacted at http://www.divisionmidway.com/

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              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty September 6, 2016 at 10:29 pm

                It’s not so much that I want to see changes there; it’s more that I want locals to be empowered and have the resources to make changes if they want to. I don’t really feel it is my place to go to someone else’s neighborhood and tell them what they should want.

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              • Adam H.
                Adam H. September 7, 2016 at 10:05 am

                But isn’t this what TriMet and Metro do when planning a light rail line? Why should street safety or bicycle facilities be any different? I see no problem with the city coming to a neighborhood and telling people they want to make the street safer, but will consider “the needs of the neighborhood,” whatever that may be.

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              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty September 7, 2016 at 10:33 am

                The idea is that there are a set of tradeoffs to be made. How you or I would make those tradeoffs might differ from how other people would. I don’t feel comfortable imposing my values on other people. I think communities/neighborhoods should have a big say in what is right for them (which is why I also dislike your ideas of imposing zoning changes on communities that don’t want them).

                I do acknowledge that this viewpoint inherently conflicts with the needs of creating good transportation networks, which do require some uniformity. But I believe more in persuading than dictating, and that change should be driven from the inside, not the outside.

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              • Adam H.
                Adam H. September 7, 2016 at 10:50 am

                Surely there is some middle ground between the city dictating changes and the neighborhood deciding everything for themselves. As you say, everything has tradeoffs. Would you be making the same argument if say, Beaverton drivers wanted to build another highway into Portland? We have an elected regional planning agency that is supposed to be making this compromise between planning for the regions future and giving residents what they want.

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              • Hello, Kitty
                Hello, Kitty September 7, 2016 at 11:39 am

                One question would be what do the Portland people think about it… but yes, there is a middle ground, and that’s usually where the optimum solution lies.

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          • Avatar
            Spiffy September 7, 2016 at 9:23 am

            “Let the people who use the street set the priorities.”

            sounds like the current existing method of infrastructure democracy and it’s a horrible idea…

            let the leaders who have the power make the correct decisions…

            if they won’t make the decisions then get new leaders…

            public safety can’t be left to the people as they only care about their own safety and not the safety of others…

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  • Avatar
    David Hampsten September 6, 2016 at 3:00 pm

    This particular intersection, along with nearby 125th, serves about 500 homes just south of Division, in a “no other outlet” development built as a public housing project in the 1990s, right after annexation, with only the one outlet onto Division, with no signal nor any islands. PBOT “signed off” on the project when it was built, so blame PBOT and not the County for this intersection. PBOT eventually put an island at 126th in 2012, then rapid flashing beacons last year. And, yeah, it’s notoriously deadly, with local residents crossing regularly the 82 feet from curb to curb (96 ft ROW), bad narrow or missing sidewalks, to catch the bus. Go out there some time during the day – within a half-hour you’ll see several folks cross at that location, often elderly, usually non-white, sometimes kids too, with cars making dangerous left turns out of 125th (they have no choice, really.)

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    Andy September 6, 2016 at 3:29 pm

    When you review the recent spate of pedestrian fatalities, I have great difficulty believing that Commissioner Novick’s personal responsibility emphasis would have any effect. Does this driver seem like he would be influenced by a personal responsibility campaign? How about the driver on Hawthorne?

    Though I am not an expert, it seems to me that a review of these fatalities
    points to:
    – the need for increased enforcement, and
    – facilities that allow pedestrians to cross streets like this safely and at reasonable intervals.

    This is an enforcement and facilities issue.

    No reasonable person can look at this street and believe that pedestrians can cross safely, especially when you are aware of actual driver behavior resulting in part from a lack of enforcement. The de facto public policy is that pedestrians do not have a right to cross the street safely in many places throughout the Portland metropolitan area. You can give all the speeches about personal responsibility you want but it won’t change that.

    I don’t understand why this isn’t the #1 issue in Commissioner Novick’s reelection campaign. His response should not be acceptable.

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    Benjamin September 6, 2016 at 3:43 pm

    In Yosemite National Park they have a problem with speeding cars killing bears. They started a system of installing “Speeding Kills Bears” signs at the location that any speeding motorist has hit and killed a bear. The signs are very effective. As you drive around the park and come across the signs, it is a sad reminder of what breaking the law can do. I wonder if maybe it would be equally as effective on the streets of Portland. Any place that fatal collision occurs in Portland (or has occurred over the last 20 years), install a “Speeding Kills” signs. It would be a somber reminder to slow down and pay more attention as you drive.

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    jeff September 6, 2016 at 4:29 pm

    or instead of wanting to redesign every single street in Portland or lack of enforcement, you all could talk about reducing drunk driving. which was the actual cause of the fatality here again.

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      rick September 6, 2016 at 4:34 pm

      SE Division in outer Portland is a Cesspool of planning.

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      Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) September 6, 2016 at 4:37 pm

      it’s hard to say that any one thing was the “cause”. I don’t think drunk driving was the cause either. What if we had more OLCC regulations about serving people at bars who then get in a car? What if we had stronger educational programs that taught more people about the dangers of drunk driving? What if the street was designed in such a way that it was harder to go fast and make bad decisions? Or maybe the design of the street should create physical separation between modes? What if we didn’t always glorify driving and make it seem like a right instead of a privilege? What if the state of our world and society didn’t make so many people want to drink? ‘

      my point is that i see a lot of arguing about what one specific thing caused these crashes… And I think it’s more productive to talk about all the things – the entire system – that allows them to happen with such frequency.

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      • Adam H.
        Adam H. September 6, 2016 at 4:40 pm

        Or what if we just had a bus system that ran late at night and with sufficient frequency that no one would have to drive to a bar?

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          still riding after all that September 6, 2016 at 5:11 pm

          That won’t do it, Adam. The problem is the “me first, F-you” mindset that so many people have. Drinking ANY amount of alcohol, followed by getting behind the wheel of a motor vehicle, is wrong and dangerous and deadly. Same applies to using pot and other drugs, playing with a phone while driving, putting on makeup while driving, and so on.

          People who drink-and-drive simply don’t CARE if they kill or cripple somebody, even themselves. They aren’t gonna take a bus or a cab or do anything other than what they do now *UNTIL THERE ARE SOME REAL CONSEQUENCES* for combining alcohol and cars. No more driver’s license would be a good start.

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            Eric Leifsdad September 6, 2016 at 7:46 pm

            “Real consequences” are a deterrent, but just a stronger deterrent isn’t going to solve it. What will actually STOP the car driven by a drunk or reckless driver, even an incapacitated/choking driver, a runaway vehicle, or stuck accelerator pedal? People are much better at responding to immediate threats to themselves, and our roads don’t provide any cues of danger to drivers — they can break laws constantly without so much as worrying about scratching their paint. More enforcement would serve as better reminder, but a barrel full of sand costs $300 and can work an intersection all night.

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            Middle of the Road Guy September 7, 2016 at 10:02 am

            You really can’t say how they feel about others. They may actually care very much but not feel they are a risk to others.

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        • Hello, Kitty
          Hello, Kitty September 6, 2016 at 5:22 pm

          Or what if people did what I do, which is drink quietly at home, in the dark, until the wee hours of the morning?

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            Dan A September 6, 2016 at 7:47 pm

            …posting on BP?

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            • Hello, Kitty
              Hello, Kitty September 6, 2016 at 10:05 pm

              How did you know?

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            Spiffy September 7, 2016 at 9:14 am

            I walk to any of the dozen bars within a mile of my house…

            city life ftw!

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            Middle of the Road Guy September 7, 2016 at 10:02 am

            You sound like my kind of cartoon character!

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        B. Carfree September 6, 2016 at 5:21 pm

        I’m glad you mentioned OLCC. I believe they have the authority to remove the licenses of establishments that overserve. Unfortunately, my local OLCC office refuses to do so. They have gone so far as to say the if the cops were to ask a drunk driver where s/he was drinking, they wouldn’t believe the answer.

        This is the problem with having an agency responsible for both regulating something and advocating for its use, as OLCC is with intoxicants. Poor government design goes way beyond our transportation infrastructure.

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        nport September 6, 2016 at 5:26 pm

        I am all for an all-of-the-above approach. My mom taught my dad to drive by asking him to imagine my baby sister crossing the street. Somehow creating that level of awareness in everyone who can operate wheels (2 or 4) is vital.

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        • Hello, Kitty
          Hello, Kitty September 6, 2016 at 5:27 pm

          That approach seems highly dependent on how your dad felt about your baby sitter.

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            Ted Timmons (Contributor) September 6, 2016 at 5:54 pm

            “baby sister”. Close enough to add an interesting twist.

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            • Hello, Kitty
              Hello, Kitty September 6, 2016 at 5:59 pm

              Ah yes. There are some interesting scenarios to consider.

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            nport September 7, 2016 at 8:22 am

            You must be a nice person in real life.

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            • Hello, Kitty
              Hello, Kitty September 7, 2016 at 9:44 am

              Real life? I’m a cartoon character!

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        Andy September 6, 2016 at 8:16 pm

        All well and good, but if we are going to be a part of making things better we need to get behind a limited set of concrete, achievable initiatives that will be effective in reducing the number of deaths. You know the prayer for the wisdom to know the difference between what you can change and what you can’t.

        Analysis of and debate over proximate and root causes of recent fatalities are means to this end.

        You are adding a lot of value by detailed, factual reporting about these deaths and by providing a discussion forum.

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    rick September 6, 2016 at 4:33 pm

    Driver’s liscense needs to be removed for life.

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    nport September 6, 2016 at 5:24 pm

    I agree with rick. This guy needs to lose his license. Common sense should dictate safe behavior behind the wheel, but breaking the law and causing death should have serious and irreversible consequences.

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      rick September 6, 2016 at 6:41 pm

      yes

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    wsbob September 6, 2016 at 6:50 pm

    Sounds to me as though some people may somehow be thinking that efforts to reduce top mph motor vehicle travel speed on streets, through street design and infrastructure can disarm the danger to other road users by people that drive drunk, high, or otherwise irresponsibly.

    I suppose that kind of anti-drunk driver approach could at least be tried out somewhere, to see if it works…but I wonder what kind of street functionality for practical travel, such a design would present to people that drive responsibly.

    Motor vehicles are far too accessible for operation by people that for one or another reason, aren’t fit to safely operate a motor vehicle on the streets. By the way…somewhere out on the coast dunes this past weekend I believe…there was another fatal atv collision; didn’t read the story so don’t know for sure, but am thinking it may have been due to more drunk-stupid behavior.

    If good, competent, people, operating motor vehicles responsibly, have difficulty avoiding, and are being involved in close calls and collisions on the street…the problem may be due to unsafe design or infrastructure. When the collisions occurring, consistently involve someone that’s not fit to operate a motor vehicle, the problem this suggests, is one of behavior, or access to motor vehicles, rather than street design or infrastructure.

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      Dan A September 7, 2016 at 7:24 am

      The crash on Baseline on Saturday night is a little baffling. Woman trying to cross the road, which is 40mph and has a lit mid-block crossing nearby, which she wasn’t in. The officer on the scene said that it didn’t appear that the driver was speeding (by what definition?), intoxicated, or driving recklessly, and that there was little he could do to avoid the collision.

      Did the woman jump directly in front of the car? If so, why don’t any of the stories say so? Public comments on the story basically say, ‘If you aren’t in a crosswalk, you are fair game.’

      http://www.oregonlive.com/beaverton/index.ssf/2016/09/driver_in_fatal_beaverton_pede.html

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        bradwagon September 7, 2016 at 8:36 am

        That incident is more worrisome to me. Yes drunk driving is horrible but the beaverton crash is essentially… “Well no vehicle laws were broken so apparently jaywalking (in the area of a marked crossing where drivers should expect pedestrians) is punishable by death”. Regardless if she was in the cross walk or a few yards before or after it… Someone was killed within yards of a regional trail system crossing that had multiple ped crossing warning signs. A driver killed someone in an area where someone should reasonably expect pedestrians to be crossing the road… sounds reckless to me. Wish we could get crosswalk zones of 20mph speed limits.

        Clearly 40mph and a curved road with no shoulder are not enough here, if she was crossing south to north she likely didn’t see the car even if she did look (not saying she didn’t but just guessing based on articles mention of her already being distracted with a phone call). 40mph is roughly 60 feet per second. Looking at the area I estimate a vehicle cannot see the south side curb of that crossing till about 200ft out, so only 3-4 seconds for both parties to react, not and instant but definitly not enough time for a popular pathway crossing.

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      • Hello, Kitty
        Hello, Kitty September 7, 2016 at 9:49 am

        You almost make it sound like drivers want to hit people.

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          Dan A September 7, 2016 at 11:48 am

          I don’t know enough about what happened here to even guess at what went down. There are almost NO details in the story. We don’t know at what speed the Mustang was being driven. We don’t know if the driver was actively looking for people on or near the road (they were driving past rows of condos and approaching a major MUP crossing). We don’t know if he ever saw the victim, or whether he did anything to avoid her, like swerving or braking. We don’t know how long the driver had to react, except the officer’s opinion that the driver couldn’t do anything to avoid her. We don’t know if he had a cellphone with him in the car, or whether it had been used prior to the crash (maybe there is no way to tell?). We DO know that drivers are regularly allowed to drive 10mph over the limit — was this driver going 50mph?

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        Middle of the Road Guy September 7, 2016 at 10:00 am

        way too many drivers looking down instead of forward.

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        wsbob September 10, 2016 at 7:29 pm

        “…The officer on the scene said that it didn’t appear that the driver was speeding (by what definition?), …? dan a

        One of the points brought out by this collision, as well as in general, is, in at least my opinion, that the mph posted speed limit is too high for this section of Baseline Rd. So in effect, though the driver may not have been exceeding 40 mph, his speed, if it was 40 mph, or more than 30 mph was, again…in my opinion…an excessive speed.

        I’d suggest traveling out to this street location. Look around, study the surrounding neighborhood housing and streets, and I think it will be apparent why people on foot may not be consistently walking east to the crosswalk for the Westside Trail, or southwest to the crosswalk at Jenkins-Baseline.

        The county should have knocked the posted speed limit on this section of Baseline Rd, down to 25 or 20, years ago when the road alignment was reconfigured to make room for more housing.

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      Middle of the Road Guy September 7, 2016 at 9:59 am

      well stated wsbob.

      It’s a popular strategy for posters on BP to frequently cite infrastructure as the issue but the reality is that the vast majority of people navigate things just fine.

      There will always be a group of people who simply don’t obey rules and put others at harm. This is not isolated to drivers, but the impacts from the drivers are certainly disproportionate in the amount of damage that can occur. The problem is, this involves the concept of accountability and it is another popular strategy of this site for posters to assign accountability to others but not themselves.

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      • Hello, Kitty
        Hello, Kitty September 7, 2016 at 11:45 am

        Infrastructure can encourage people to slow down or pay more attention to difficult areas. I am a strong believer in improved road design and infrastructure as a way of increasing safety.

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          wsbob September 10, 2016 at 7:38 pm

          “…I am a strong believer in improved road design and infrastructure as a way of increasing safety. …” h kitty

          While I am definitely in favor of increasing safety through better road design and infrastructure, I don’t see that this means alone of increasing road safety, can reasonably be expected to compensate for oversights in such things as setting posted mph speed limits for motor vehicles, or to counter tendencies of people that are unfit to operate motor vehicles.

          Anyone living or working in the Beaverton area near the intersection of 166th and Baseline Rd, and that’s interested in road safety for all road users, ought to see if they can find some time to go over and take a look at the section of Baseline between 158th and Jenkins-Baseline. See if you think the posted speed limit is appropriate for this section of the road.

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            Eric Leifsdad September 11, 2016 at 9:57 am

            If you’re doubting infrastructure’s ability to reduce the risk of drunk and reckless drivers to people outside their vehicle, you’re not imagining tall enough infrastructure. Below about 30mph, running a car into a brick wall is a crash-tested survivable scenario. So, why isn’t there more stuff in the street to protect everyone else? 40-60ft of pavement between curb-tight sidewalks or some paint without so much as a “please drive carefully” sign stuck in the middle of it allows for at least 50mph turns. Though here they have a 2in curb and flexi-posts in the middle, so a 45mph turn might be pushing it depending on whether the car is stolen. Either way, 100mph should be expected on straights which are that wide.

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              wsbob September 11, 2016 at 7:29 pm

              I don’t doubt that infrastructure such as curbs, barriers, tight turns, and so on, can be devised, by which it’s possible to physically restrict motor vehicle mph speeds below that which they’re able to travel for a given stretch of street or road.

              Something I have to wonder about, is when actually taken from more than an idea that occurs to people as a possible way of regulating motor vehicle speed, for safety of roads and streets that people have need of using without a motor vehicle, and applied to the street network on a however wide a basis is needed to have the desired effect…’What will that infrastructure look like and how functional for travel will it leave the street for people that consistently drive safely and responsibly as a matter of course? ‘.

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          • Hello, Kitty
            Hello, Kitty September 11, 2016 at 10:05 am

            To me, setting speed limits is part of road design.

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        Ted Timmons (Contributor) September 7, 2016 at 7:27 pm

        Why do we do any safety projects, then? Let’s take the Dr. Fritz death; that section needed an improvement for the tiny minority and tiny risk. And improving it was still the right thing to do.

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    I wear many hats September 7, 2016 at 12:29 pm

    I’ll take chain-smoking and texting Italian drivers over Americans every day of the week. This is terrifying. I quit road riding over this. Others are quitting also. Commuting is terrifying, and nothing changes. The following link succinctly captures my view.
    http://surlybikes.com/blog/post/

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