Tickets for using an electronic device while behind the wheel were far and away the most prevalent among those handed out when Prince George RCMP traffic services and locally-based Commercial Vehicle Safety and Enforcement personnel took to the streets last Wednesday.
Over an eight-hour period, they conducted mobile checks and set up checkpoints to ensure vehicles and drivers were maintaining safe driving habits.
And during that time, they issued 28 tickets for the offence. Next highest was eight for speeding.
“Drivers should be aware that even though they don’t see us while they are using their phones and driving, we see them. The 28 tickets we handed out for using an electronic device makes this very apparent,” said Sgt. Kyle Ushock.
The offence falls under the category of distracted driving, which also covers personal grooming (applying makeup, brushing your teeth, shaving) eating and drinking, reading, playing with pets, being preoccupied with other passengers and programming a navigation device while on the move.
You should keep radio at a reasonable volume so you can hear sirens and detect other hazards and don't use headphones while driving.
Fines for distracted driving start at $368 with an automatic four demerit points added to the driver's record and increase for multiple infractions.
If you see a hazardous driver swerving or driving erratically, the RCMP recommends pulling over to the side of the road and activating hazard lights before making a 911 call. If you spot someone using a phone while driving who is not displaying dangerous driving behaviour, call the non-emergency police line at 250-561-3300.