In their continued effort to address traffic safety issues and educate citizens on the rules of the road, the HRP/RCMP Integrated Traffic Unit will focus on distracted driving throughout the month of April.
Driver distraction, such as talking or texting on a cell phone, is a leading cause of collisions in Canada. On April 1, 2008, hand-held cell phone use and text messaging while driving became prohibited in Nova Scotia. Despite education and enforcement surrounding this issue, people continue to use cell phones while driving. Every year, HRM Partners in Policing issue in excess of 2,000 tickets for this infraction, which carries a fine starting at $176.45. It’s safest to avoid talking on a cell phone while driving but if you must answer/make calls, use a hands-free device, and keep your hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road.
Speed is another major contributing factor in collisions. We remind motorists that increased speed decreases your reaction time and increases your stopping distance. The warmer weather bring an increase of tourists, cyclists, pedestrians and drivers who all need to share the roadway. The added traffic means motorists must be alert and prepared to react.
The Unit’s focus during March was impaired driving and crosswalk safety. Officers issued 1,902 Summary Offence Tickets during the month for a range of Motor Vehicle Act violations, including 83 cell phone and 24 crosswalk infractions.