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RCMP To Crack Down On Distracted Driving During Awareness Campaign

March is Distracted Driving Awareness month for BC police.

RCMP crews will be out and about looking for people on their mobile devices while on the road.

The North District RCMP says people in northern BC still aren’t getting the message.

“It certainly is 100% preventable, put the phone down or pull over and park if you have to make that call or text if you absolutely have to but don’t do it while your driving,” says Corporal Madonna Saunderson, North District RCMP.

Distracted driving is responsible for 25% of all car crashes deaths and is the second leading cause of all fatal collisions in the province.

February was a bad month for roads and highways across the north due to the heavy that came down.

Even with the less than ideal conditions, it hasn’t stopped people from trying to multi-task.

“Police are seeing people on their phone while driving and certainly pulling them over and in some cases, being issued with violations, I can’t stress enough you should pull over if you wish to talk and text,” says Saunderson.

Fines begin at $543 and rise with each subsequent offence.

However, ICBC announced Friday their Driver Risk Premium will include convictions for distracted drivers who continue to use electronic devices while behind the wheel.

Drivers with two penalties for the use of electronic devices while driving over a three-year period will now face higher premiums and could face additional fines of $2,000 – an increase of $740 from the previous penalties.

Each year, 13 people are killed on average in distracted-driving-related collisions in North Central BC.

(Files from Brendan Pawliw with MYPRINCEGEORGENOW)

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