CHP 'zero tolerance' aimed at distracted drivers


The California Highway Patrol and law enforcement agencies across the Bay Area are joining forces today (Aug. 10) for a strict zero-tolerance campaign aimed at identifying and issuing citations to motorists talking or texting on cell phones while driving.

The campaign to highlight distracted driving offenses will mirror a similar two-day enforcement effort last year, during which more than 700 cell phone citations were issued by law enforcement in Santa Clara County, and more than 550 drivers were ticketed by CHP officers throughout the Bay Area.

Cell phone use is the leading identifiable source of distracted driving and inattention stated on collision reports in California, according to the CHP. Other identified sources of distracted driving are applying makeup, using global positioning equipment, eating, drinking, changing music and reading.

— Bay City News Service

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Posted by throw the book at them
a resident of College Terrace
on Aug 10, 2010 at 1:18 pm

Distracted driving is a much more important issue than seatbelts. Sure, if you bust someone for distracted driving (or something else) and you see that they are not wearing a seatbelt, then add that to their ticket. But don't ignore more important crimes to crack down on seatbelt non-users.

2 people like this
Posted by Koa
a resident of Mountain View
on Aug 10, 2010 at 1:36 pm


Like this comment
Posted by Larry
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 10, 2010 at 3:21 pm

Ah, that would explain the CHP motorcycle officer I saw on Shoreline Blvd looking intently inside each car that he passed. This is a great idea, and hopefully it educates folks who just don't get it.

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Posted by ufo223
a resident of Triple El
on Aug 10, 2010 at 4:08 pm

Too funny! Applying makeup,using GPS devices, eating, drinking, changing music stations, reading, blowing your nose, itching your private parts, rubbernecking to watching someone change their tire on the freeway, watching CHP officers snooze in the shade on freeway underpasses,... all still legal. Where is Palo Altan Joe Simitian to make bad laws to generate income. No proven study validates increased safety factor in California for this law specifically regulating cell phone use but does keep the money rolling in, oh by the way, the story fails to mention that additional officers will be paid overtime to enforce the law with a special government grant. Yippee!

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Posted by Walter_E_Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 10, 2010 at 5:24 pm

Walter_E_Wallis is a registered user.

I would think looking into adjacent vehicles would be distracting to any driver.

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Posted by Winee
a resident of Fairmeadow
on Aug 10, 2010 at 7:01 pm

I saw a motorcycle cop on Oregon doing the same thing. While the Middlefield light was red he was weaving in between the cars peering in and -- no joke -- he almost tipped his bike over. LMAO.

Like this comment
Posted by pecuniac
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 12, 2010 at 11:33 am

Some folks can multi-task and some...the ones who sit semi-comatose in front of computers all day, have a hard time relating to the 'reality' of the road when behind the wheel. They are really dangerous when trying to text and drive.

Then there are the murderous Mommyzillas with screaming children, vast 4 ton SUV's, and nimble thumbs frantically trying to let the ballet teacher know that they will be late.
Duck and cover ye pedestrians of Palo Alto! Look both ways and pause...

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Posted by jardins
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 12, 2010 at 3:11 pm

What are the penalties for distracted driving? In Britain and on the Continent they are severe--suspension of license, I've heard. Until the penalties get as tough in this country, I don't think the CHP etc will prevail. And of course the auto lobby is too powerful for the government to ban automakers from installing other distracting devices in vehicles.

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Posted by penalties
a resident of College Terrace
on Aug 12, 2010 at 3:31 pm

I don't know what the penalties are right now, but I'm guessing they are not nearly high enough. The penalty should be the same as for drunk driving. And the drunk driving penalties need to be stiffer.

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