WEST BRIDGEWATER, Mass. —State troopers in Chattanooga, Tennessee, have been known to patrol in a tractor-trailer so they can sit up high and spot drivers texting behind the wheel.
In Bethesda, Maryland, a police officer disguised himself as a homeless man, stood near a busy intersection and radioed ahead to officers down the road about texting drivers. In two hours last October, police gave out 56 tickets.
And in West Bridgewater, Massachusetts, south of Boston, an officer regularly tools around town on his bicycle, pedals up to drivers at stoplights and hands them $105 tickets.
Texting while driving in the U.S. is not just a dangerous habit, but also an infuriatingly widespread one, practiced both brazenly and surreptitiously by so many motorists that police are being forced to get creative - and still can't seem to make much headway.
"It's everyone, kids, older people - everyone. When I stop someone, they say, 'You're right. I know it's dangerous, but I heard my phone go off and I had to look at it,'" said West Bridgewater Officer Matthew Monteiro.