It only takes a split second to lose focus when behind the wheel. Driving while using a phone can make matters much worse. The Prince George RCMP are out in full force this March, handing out tickets to people who pay too much attention to their phones.
According to ICBC, distracted driving is the second-leading cause of road deaths in B.C. On average, 15 people are killed in the northern region of the province annually. Cpl. Madonna Saunderson of the North District RCMP says fatalities caused by phone use are seen too often. “People on their cellphones, whether texting or talking, has been a contributing factor in several fatalities.”
The punishment for distracted driving is a $167 fine and three demerit points. Saunderson says it’s important to follow all the rules. “Just because you’re stopped at a red light, you are still driving and you can’t use your cellphone at a red light or a stop sign, you need to be actually pulled off the travel portion of the roadway and parked, otherwise you’re technically driving.”
Some tips for breaking the habit and taking away the temptation include, placing your phone in the trunk of your car while driving and having others in the passenger seats answer calls or texts for you.