(WETM) — New York State Police have announced a statewide crackdown on distracted driving as a part of April’s National Distracted Driving Awareness Month.
The enforcement effort, called Operation Hang Up, will run from Monday, April 4, through Monday, April 11. During this time State Police will use increased patrols and checkpoints to target drivers using electronic devices while behind the wheel.
Troopers will be using marked and unmarked vehicles to more easily identify motorists using electronic devices while driving. State Police say that unmarked vehicles allow for the Trooper to better observe distracted driving violations.
Current New York State Law includes the following penalties for distracted drivers:
- First offense – Minimum fine of $50 and a maximum of $200
- A second offense in 18 months increases the maximum fine to $250
- The third offense in 18 months increases the maximum fine to $450
- Probationary and junior drivers face a 120-day suspension of their license for a first offense, and a one-year revocation of their permit or license if a second offense is committed within six months
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 3,142 people were killed in the United States in distraction-affected crashes in 2020. To help prevent accidents, the NHTSA recommends motorists pull over in a safe location to answer texts or have a passenger handle your texting.