Distracted Driving Citations on the Rise in Pennsylvania

Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of avoidable motor vehicle accidents.  The most common form of distraction behind the wheel is cell-phone use while driving.  This is why so many states have enacted laws to cite those that drive while using their cell phone in a hope to decrease distracted driving accidents.

From 2016 to 2017, distracted driving-related citations increased by 52% in Pennsylvania.  Pennsylvania law enforcement officials issued 5,054 distracted driving citations in 2017, up from 3,336 citations in 2016. 15,542 citations have been issued in Pennsylvania since 2013.

According to the NHTSA, 3,477 people were killed and 391,000 were injured in crashes involving distracted drivers in 2015.  They estimate that around 660,000 drivers are using an electronic device while driving daily.

Texting and driving is a primary offense in Pennsylvania.  This means that a police officer can pull you over and give you a ticket for violating this law without having also witnessed you commit a different violation.

You cannot safely operate a vehicle unless driving that vehicle has your full attention.  While texting and driving is the most common form of distracted driving, there are so many other forms that can be just as dangerous even if there aren’t laws prohibiting them.  Doing anything that takes your focus away from the road, such as eating while driving, putting on makeup, or looking for a song to listen to, can be dangerous to you, passengers, other motorists, and even pedestrians.

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