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  Officers Enforce Distracted Driving Bill

Feb 09, 2010 10:07 ET

The first week of Bill 118 enforcement resulted in 63 charges being laid in relation to driver’s contravening the hands-free communications law now in effect.

The Durham Regional Police Service found compliance with the new law very high, however, 63 charges were laid which included 60 charges for holding or using a cellphone while not in a hands-free mode and three charges for holding or using an entertainment device while driving.

Motorists are reminded that holding or using these devices while driving is unsafe and now illegal. Distracted driving is one of the leading causes in motor vehicle collisions and is sometimes compared to driving while impaired. The DRPS Traffic Services Branch asks all motorists to help keep our roads safe by concentrating on their driving while operating a motor vehicle.

Bill 118 came into effect on February 1, 2010 and the new law prohibits the use of hand-held wireless communication devices, hand-held entertainment devices and certain electronic display screens while operating a motor vehicle on a highway in Ontario. These devices included: cellphones; BlackBerrys; iPods; the texting or messaging on these devices; programming or changing information on GPS devices and having display screens visible to the driver such as DVD players and laptop computers.

Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of collisions on our roadways. All drivers are encouraged to abide by this law and not use these electronic devices while driving. Roadway safety continues to be a top priority of the Durham Regional Police and as a result the offences relating to distracted driving will be strictly enforced.

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