By Chris Temelkos
If you still have your cell phone in one hand and your steering wheel in the other, you will want to cut that old habit out, cold turkey. The handheld electronic device ban, which came into full force on February 1, 2010, has seen 4,397 drivers ticketed over the past three months.
Police officers are constantly monitoring traffic whether you see them or not and they are pulling over offending drivers. If you are caught, you will be charged with either holding a handheld communication device, having a display screen visible to the driver or using a handheld entertainment device. It’s quite a hefty price to pay, at $155 and challenging the ticket could see it raised to $500 according to the judge’s discretion. Police are making it clear that there is zero tolerance.
The ban has seen an increase of offenders and I can see why, old habits die hard. On a daily basis I come across a good handful of distracted drivers talking on the phone and not paying attention to the road ahead, putting other drivers and pedestrians in jeopardy. Perhaps, the penalties are not large enough; maybe a suspended license or a much higher fine would do the trick.