60,800 distracted driving tickets issued to Calif. drivers in April

12:56 PM, May 16, 2012   |    comments
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Tips to protecting yourself from distracted driving: 

  • Put your cell phone out of reach when you get in the car so you won’t be tempted to use it.
  • Mention on your outgoing voicemail message that you can’t answer because you might be driving.
  • Don’t call or text anyone when there is a good chance that they may be driving.
  • If you must call or text, pull into a parking space.
  • The ability to safely multi-task while driving is myth.
  • Never eat, groom, program a GPS, check Facebook, run an app, read or otherwise allow your full attention to leave the task of safely driving.

SACRAMENTO - A whopping 60,800 tickets were issued to distracted California drivers in April 2012, according to the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS).

A cooperative effort between the California Highway Patrol and 265 local law enforcement agencies throughout the state tallied 57,000 tickets for driving while using a handheld cell phone or texting, and another 3,800 for additional distracted driving violations which could include eating, grooming, programming a GPS, and other functions.

The number is up 16,800 from April 2011 when 52,000 citations were issued for distracted driving.

"Unfortunately, we're seeing that the problem of cell phone use for talking and texting while driving is not going away anytime soon," said OTS Director Christopher J. Murphy. "There are those who understand the dangers and have curtailed their use, while others think the hazards apply to everyone else but them. We can't stop until we convince everyone that they are putting their own life and others around them at risk with this perilous behavior."

A statewide observational survey conducted by the OTS supported Murhpy's claims. More than 10 percent of drivers were witnessed talking or texting while driving during the survey, which translates to hundreds of thousands of distracted drives on California roadways at any given time.

The crackdown was part of the second annual "It's Not Worth It! campaign and National Driving Awareness month.


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