OSP's new unarked vehicles will allow the agency to crack down on distracted driving. Photo via Flickr/Oregon DOT

OSP's new unarked vehicles will allow the agency to crack down on distracted driving. Photo via Flickr/Oregon DOT

The Oregon State Police (OSP) has started using 40 new unmarked patrol cars in an effort to curb distracted driving. Since the new cars have been put into service, the agency has seen a 37% increase in traffic stops related to distracted driving, according to the OSP.

“We’re reducing what we call the fatal five driving behaviors: speed, occupant safety, lane usage, impaired driving and distracted driving,” said OSP Captain Dave Anderson in a release.

The Oregon Department of Transportation, OSP, AAA Oregon/Idaho, and others have formed a task force to reduce distracted driving, ODOT Director Matt Garrett announced at a media event on April 5. The event kicked of National Distracted Driving Awareness Month.

This OSP car was pulled to the side of the road with lights and flares, yet was hit by a distracted driver. Photo via Flickr/Oregon DOT

This OSP car was pulled to the side of the road with lights and flares, yet was hit by a distracted driver. Photo via Flickr/Oregon DOT

ODOT crash data reveals that on average, over the five-year period from 2010 to 2014, a distracted driver crash occurred every 2.5 hours. Last February, a distracted driver’s car hit and totaled an OSP patrol vehicle, which was on display at the event.

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