On the look-out for distracted drivers this month

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Great Northern Road and Second Line - 30 tickets issued at this location in one day alone.

The Sault Ste Marie Police Service has designated March as Distracted Driving month, and as such officers form Patrol and Traffic Services will be conducting targeted enforcement of Ontario’s traffic laws regarding the use of hand held communication and entertainment devices.

The Highway Traffic Act of Ontario prohibits the use of cell phones and other entertainment devices while driving a motor vehicle.

There are exemptions for using a handheld communication device and they are:

To contact Police, Fire or EMS Services
While using it in conjunction with a hands free device (Bluetooth type devices) and
The phone may be used if all of the following are present

1. The motor vehicle is off the roadway or is lawfully parked on the roadway
2. The motor vehicle is not in motion
3. The motor vehicle is not impeding traffic.
Motorists are reminded that the offence is committed when the driver holds or uses one of these devices, so therefore checking call logs, emails, or texting are all prohibited.

If you are stopped by officers for having a cell phone in your hand will receive a minimum fine of $490 and the loss of 3 demerit points.

Officers have further noticed an increase in those having their driver and passenger front side windows tinted to a degree that the driver cannot be seen. Complaints from the driving public with regards to high level of tint covering on these side windows have also been received. As a result, in conjunction with the distracted driving campaign, officers will be looking for those with excessive dark tint on those windows.

The Highway Traffic Act of Ontario prohibits the use of any coloured material on the windshield or side windows directly to the left or right side of the driver’s seat that “substantially obscures” the interior of the motor vehicle when viewed from the outside. This applies if you are checked day or night. Those found with an excessive tint on these windows could face $110 fine.

Every licensed driver has a responsibility to direct his or her compete attention to driving safely.

1 COMMENT

  1. So when driving behind a suspected drunk driver…which I was the other night after he blew a red light at a major intersection and almost hit me, It was like a ghost vehicle, all lights were turned off, it came into that intersection like a phantom bat out of the darkness and tore down trunk road at a high rate of speed, weaving and crossing over the line (unfortunately he shortly thereafter ended up crashing on Queen St. E and being charged as i read on the SaultOnline police report the next day) So from what I understand from this police release is that I would not have been lawful if I dialed 911 to report this driver- unless I am pulled off the road? Again – the car had all lights out, I could not see a plate, I stayed behind him trying to get his plate or at least the make of car or colour, this guy was seriously going to kill someone driving like that …I couldn’t even be certain of the cars colour with no lights at night …it was 2am. When trying to stay a safe distance behind him it brought me to speeds far too high and he didn’t hit his brakes once…so I backed off and prayed there was a police cruiser around the bend on Wellington and/or he didn’t hurt anyone. So moral of my story: Legally I should have pulled off the road to make the call? This all happened very fast, I would have been of NO help to police taking all these steps and pulling over before calling 911 to stop a dangerous drunk driver. SMH

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