Distracted drivers keep police busy
Despite repeated advanced warnings from the RCMP, local officers averaged nearly three distracted driving tickets a day during a month-long provincewide campaign.
The February initiative was aimed at drivers who use their cell phones with their hands while behind the wheel as opposed to using a hands-free device.
A total of 89 distracted driving violation tickets were issued locally in February.
“The message is leave your phone away from your hands when driving,” said Vernon-North Okanagan RCMP spokesperson Gord Molendyk.
“We know you carry a phone, but put it in your purse or on your wallet, or use a bluetooth device.”
Members of the North Okanagan Traffic Services and Integrated Road Safety units issued 69 tickets while general duty officers throughout Vernon and the other North Okanagan communities wrote another 19.
The number could have been higher.
“Of the 69 written by the traffic members, keep in mind they don’t have officers working every day,” said Molendyk. “We are limited with the amount of officers we have working. Some may be doing court duty.”