Traffic Services units throughout the North District will join other Traffic Units in the province focusing on Distracted Driving throughout the month of February. Despite the new legislation, police have noticed more drivers taking chances talking and texting while driving.
Out of the 104 distracted driving-related collision fatalities occurred in RCMP jurisdictions in 2010, 14 were from the Island District, 45 were from the Lower Mainland District, 15 were from the North District and 30 were from the Southeast District.
If drivers need to make a phone call on a cellular phone or check email, they are advised to use a hands free device, or pull their vehicle over.
“You really have ask yourself how important that message or conversation is. Is it important enough to endanger yourself or others. ” said Sgt. Pat McTiernan in a press release. “Furthermore are you willing to pay $167 for that call?”
The fine for using an electronic device without hands-free while driving is $167. Drivers caught texting or e-mailing may receive three driver penalty points in addition to the fine. Drivers in the Graduated Licensing Program are not permitted to use any prescribed electronic device, even if it is hands-free. They will receive the $167 fine and three driver penalty points for violating the distracted driving legislation.
Enforcement teams throughout the north will be using innovative techniques to monitor drivers who persist in driving while being distracted in the performance of some other activity. They will focus on electronic devices overall.