Today’s Poll

Zero tolerance for distracted driving on Labour Day Weekend

Contributor
By Contributor
September 2nd, 2011

Feeling distracted? A recent Ipsos Reid survey conducted on behalf of the Insurance Corporation of BC reported that nearly 87 per cent of respondents believe texting or emailing while driving is one of the most risky things we can do behind the wheel, and 76 per cent reported it’s just as dangerous as drinking and driving.

Starting this weekend and throughout the month of September, police across the West Kootenay and B.C. will use targeted strategies to enforce distracted driving behaviours such as talking or texting on a handheld electronic device. Police will be issuing warnings and tickets with a $167 fine where appropriate.

Fifty per cent also consider talking on a hand-held cellphone while driving just as dangerous as drinking and driving.
 
The statistics speak for themselves. From Feb. 1, 2010 to June 30, 2011, police issued 36,921 tickets to drivers for use of an electronic device while driving, and 1,081 tickets to drivers for emailing or texting while driving.
 
Each year on average, B.C. records 117 fatalities and more than 1,400 serious injuries as a result of distracted driving. This fatality rate falls right behind impaired driving and speeding, which results in 126 and 152 average annual deaths, respectively.
 
Drivers who talk or text while driving can be issued a $167.00 fine, and a three-point penalty against their driver’s licence.

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