Many Oregon drivers have experienced the brutally congested traffic — especially while commuting through Portland. Portland is among the cities with the worst traffic in the country, and you may wonder if it's a result of all the terrible drivers. According to QuoteWizard data, your inferences would be correct.
In QuoteWizard's studies of the best and worst drivers by city and by state, both Portland and the state of Oregon rank among the nation's worst drivers, respectively. Yes, Portland drivers are bad, but Oregon drivers as a whole are not much better. Next time you're stuck in Portland traffic, know that drivers from neighboring cities like Sherwood and all the way up to Salem are contributing to these poor driving conditions.
We here at QuoteWizard wanted to find out which cities are the biggest contributors to Oregon's bad drivers and which cities are its saving grace. We analyzed over 40,000 insurance quotes from Oregon drivers using QuoteWizard.com and ranked the 50 largest cities in Oregon by the highest rate of incidents and overall driver quality. Incidents include accidents, speeding tickets, DUIs, and citations. Cities below are ranked 1-50 from worst to best drivers.
Worst Driving Cities
Northeast of Pinot wine country along 99 West is the home of Oregon's worst drivers. Sherwood drivers could be enjoying Willamette Valley wine a little too much before getting behind the wheel. They could also be letting loose on 99 as they get into the countryside. Either way, Sherwood collected the highest rate of incidents among all cities in the state. Sherwood resides in Washington County, which had 3.57 road fatalities per 100,000 people in 2017, one of the lowest figures in the state.
Thirty minutes east of Sherwood live the second-worst drivers in the state. Although mostly suburban roads, the I-205, which passes through the southern portion of West Linn, could be the culprit for such a high rate of incidents. Clackamas County was responsible for 7.03 road fatalities per 100,000 people in 2017.
Following a trend of less-than-stellar southern Portland suburban drivers, Oatfield checks in at number three on our worst drivers list. Right across the river from West Linn, Oatfield also shares a portion of the I-205. Next time you encounter awful drivers in the Portland area, take solace in knowing they're likely from the south end.
Best Driving Cities
Getting away from the Portland area must work wonders on the quality of driving, as Ashland is about as far as you can get and tops our list with the best drivers in Oregon. Safe drivers in the city avoid the speed traps set up along I-5 and take it easy on the small town roads. That being said, Jackson County had 11.04 road fatalities per 100,000 people, which is among the highest rates in the state.
Another example of the benefits of getting away from the Portland area, Klamath Falls gets to enjoy safe road travels far away from the substandard drivers in the congested city. Residing near the California border, Klamath Falls residents need be careful crossing the border, as California drivers rank far worse than Oregon drivers. Klamath County, however, accounts for a high rate of road fatalities. In 2017, Klamath County had 25.40 road fatalities per 100,000 residents.
As sure as the sun rises in the east, another southern Oregon city tops the list as some of the best drivers. Again, be careful how far south you go, as California drivers can get dicey. Altamont shares the same safe roads as neighboring city, Klamath Falls. Klamath County, which includes both Klamath Falls and Altamont, covers large swaths of mountainous roads in sparsely populated areas, driving the fatality rate to one of the highest in the state.
The QuoteWizard research team evaluated driver quality from the 50 largest cities in Oregon by population. We analyzed 2018 data of over 40,000 insurance quotes from Oregon drivers using QuoteWizard.com to find the rate of overall incidents in each city. Incidents include accidents, speeding tickets, DUIs, and citations. Cities ranked first (worst drivers) to 50th (best drivers).