Cowichan News Leader

Distracted drivers the target of RCMP's February crackdown

North Cowichan-Duncan RCMP. - file
North Cowichan-Duncan RCMP.
— image credit: file

A campaign by the RCMP to crack down on distracted drivers is continuing until the end of February.

Reducing fatalities and serious injuries on the roads is the main priority of the campaign launched by B.C. RCMP Traffic Services.

"Police across B.C. will be targeting drivers who operate vehicles while using a handheld device,'' says Corp. Robert McDonald of B.C. RCMP Traffic Services in a press release.

"Holding a cellphone in your hand on speaker phone is an offense under the Motor Vehicle Act of using an electronic device while driving and could result in a fine of $167. This also applies to leaving the cellphone on your console and typing while stopped in traffic.''

Since the ban of handheld devices while driving went into effect in January of 2010, police in B.C. have issued 105,972 violation tickets.

Graduated License program drivers (L and N stickers) are not permitted to use any electronic devices, including hands-free.

Preliminary statistics for 2012 indicate 30 % of motor vehicle fatalities and 37 % of motor vehicle serious injuries involved distracted driving.

 

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