OPP launches distracted driving campaign for Labour Day weekend

woman using phone behind steering wheel

The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) has announced a Labour Day weekend campaign that will crack down on distracted driving across the province.

As part of its no-tolerance policy towards distracted driving, the OPP says it will be vigilantly monitoring the streets between Friday, August 31st and Sunday, September 2nd.

According to the OPP, there have been over 5,600 reported collisions involving an inattentive driver in 2018 so far. More than 30 people have been killed in these incidents, while a further 1,051 people have been injured.

In general, the OPP says that one person is injured in a distracted-driving collision every half hour, while drivers using phones are four times more likely to crash than focused drivers.

The OPP considers anything that takes a driver’s full attention from the road to be distracted driving, including simply holding an electronic device, eating food, typing a location into a GPS or choosing a music playlist.

If caught, a distracted driver can face the following penalties:

  • a fine of $490, if settled out of court (includes a victim surcharge and the court fee)
  • a fine of up to $1,000 if a summons is received
  • three demerit points

“Some drivers claim to be good multi-taskers behind the wheel and this is how they justify habitual texting, talking on their phone or other distractions while driving. This attitude has contributed to driver inattention being the deadliest behaviour on OPP-patrolled roads for the past five years,” OPP Commissioner J. V. N. Hawkes said in a press statement.

Via: The Record