The New York City Police Department today announced a citywide crackdown beginning Thursday at midnight (tonight) on the use of hand-held cell phones while driving, as part of its focus on traffic infractions linked to death and injury.
The NYPD reminds all New Yorkers that the use of a hand-held cell phone while driving a vehicle is illegal. In addition, driving while texting or talking on a cell phone is dangerous and endangers both drivers and pedestrians. They will be issuing summons to drivers for using either a cell phone or any PDA. (Blackberry, I-phone etc).
Please make your family and friends aware that the new law includes electronic devices like Blackberrys and that there is a 0% tolerance by officers in the field during the 24 hours. That means no discretion by the officer is allowed to give you a “Warning”. They will write a summons. Typically the NYPD will place Police Officers at bottleneck areas (bridge and tunnel approaches) and at intersections looking for people texting while they are stopped at a red light. (As most people do)
Individuals using hand-held cell phones while driving in New York City face a fine of $130. During 2009, the NYPD issued on average 617 summonses a day to drivers using hand-held cell phones. On October 22, 2009, 7,463 summonses were issued for this infraction during an initiative similar to the one planned for this coming Thursday.
The 24-hour initiative begins Thursday, January 21, 2010st at midnight. The NYPD encourages safe driving and asks the public to use seatbelts and to use a hands-free device for car phones.