Police cracking down with fines on distracted driving cellphone use in cars


City News Service

The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department and California Highway Patrol today began a crackdown on motorists who use their cellphones to talk without hands-free devices or text while driving.

The crackdown will run from today through Saturday, according to a Sheriff’s Department statement.

Motorists caught talking without a hands free device or texting on their cell phones will be cited -- a minimum of $159 for a first offense and $279 for repeat offenders.

“We take distracted driving very seriously,” sheriff’s Lt. David Gilmore said. “Cell phone use and texting while driving is such a serious concern that we are putting deputies and officers on the road to target offenders.”

According to the California Office of Traffic Safety, drivers who use hand-held devices are four times as likely to get into crashes serious enough to injure themselves.