Police crack down on distracted drivers
The Porterville Police Department has seen a rise in traffic collisions over the past month and has linked this to another trend that has been identified as having increased over the last few months, distracted driving because of the use of cell phones.
In response, the traffic unit of the Porterville Police Department has arranged an enforcement detail specifically targeting those who talk or text while driving. Over a two-hour window, nearly thirty citations were issued on Henderson Avenue, between Highway 65 and Newcomb Street. Fines for using a cell phone while driving can be greater than $200, and, more importantly, the violation poses a considerable danger to the distracted driver, passengers and the public.
PPD urges everyone to let the call go to voice mail, pull over before accepting the call, or at least purchase a hands-free device. Free applications have become available for smart phone users which will notify incoming callers that the person they are calling is driving and unavailable to answer.
Contrary to what drivers might think, driving while holding a cell phone that may be on speaker phone is still in violation of the law, and a person doing so can be cited.
The PPD Traffic Unit’s mission is to save lives and maintain the safe flow of traffic, and, in an effort to do so, asks Porterville residents to join in a zero tolerance stance against distracted driving.