And if you thought water travel was scary….

By Morf Morford
Tacoma Daily Index

No, it’s not your imagination; car drivers around here are among the worst – or at least the most distracted – of anywhere in the country.

We usually can’t blame the weather, but we are distracted by almost anything else – I’ve seen people eating breakfast (yes, a bowl of cereal in one hand, a spoon in the other and the steering wheel controlled by the elbows) changing clothes or focusing on kids, pets or passengers. And now, thanks to the phones we all have at hand and vaping, and whole new level of distraction opens up.

Here are a few horrifying details;

South Seattle has some of the most distracted drivers in Washington, according to‘s latest report on distracted driving.

SeaTac has the second-highest frequency of distracted driving crashes in WA. In 2017, 115 distracted driving incidents occurred, resulting in one fatality.

University Place is ranked number 49. Not bad compared to Tacoma which sits at number 3 most distracted. At least we are not number one.

Tacoma’s 200,000 plus residents got into 661 distracted driving incidents, resulting in two fatalities.

Just below Tacoma, Lakewood sits at number 4, with 181 distracted driving crashes in 2017, two of which resulted in fatalities

There are 11,504 distracted driving crashes in the state, 87 of which were fatal according to the WSDOT.

Seattle’s sit at number 10 for distracted driving. There were 1,347 distracted driving incidents among Seattle’s population of over 720,000 people. Despite this, Seattle earned the title of the ninth safest driving city in Washington in the 2018 study.

4 out of the 5 King County Eastside cities rank for least distracted drivers in the state. Bellevue is the exception ranked at number 8 most distracted driving city.

Although Bellevue earned the title of seventh safest driving city in Washington in 2018, WSDOT data showed the city has a high rate of distracted drivers.

Much to no one’s surprise, one in four drivers involved in a fatal or serious-injury crash are under 25-years-old.

I used to tell my college students that driverless cars didn’t need to be perfect – they just need to be better than human drivers. Unfortunately, that bar is pretty low.

Either way, by land or by water, life is precarious in Tacoma. Be careful out there.