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Tuesday, August 01, 2017

Maryland State Police Continues Focus On Distracted Drivers

(PIKESVILLE, MD) – Maryland State Police are continuing to make enforcement of distracted driving laws a top priority as troopers issued significantly more citations and warnings over the first six months of 2017 compared to the same time last year.

Between Jan. 1 and July 1 2017, Maryland State troopers issued a combined 20,762 warnings and citations, compared to 17,718 over an identical time period in 2016. This included 10,158 citations and 10,604 warnings this year compared to 9,126 citations and 8,592 warnings in 2016.

The National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) defines distracted driving as any activity that diverts attention from driving, including talking or texting on your phone, eating and drinking, talking to people in your vehicle and/or adjusting the stereo, entertainment or navigation systems. Every time a driver takes their eyes off the road and focuses their attention on something else, they are endangering themselves, those in their vehicle and everyone else on the road around them.

It has been estimated that a person texting takes their eyes off the road for an average of five seconds. To put this into perspective, this is like covering the length of a football field while driving blindfolded if you are driving 55 mph.

The Maryland Highway Safety Office estimated an average of 30,000 people are injured or killed each year in crashes linked to distracted driving. The NHTSA reported that in 2015 alone, 3,477 people were killed and 391,000 more were injured in motor vehicle crashes involving distracted drivers.

The increased enforcement effort comes after the passage of Jake’s Law. In effect since 2014, Jake’s Law is named after Jake Owen, who was just 5 when he was killed in a car accident caused by a distracted driver in 2011. The law states that a driver causing serious injury or death while talking on a handheld cellphone or texting may receive up to three years in prison and a $5,000 fine. These are primary offenses and police officers can stop drivers when those activities are observed, regardless of the presence of other violations.

Maryland State Police are encouraging drivers to do their part to keep our highways safe. Motorists should identify what distracts them when they drive and recognize the significant danger those distractions cause. It is important to eliminate those distractions whenever you are behind the wheel.

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13 comments:

Anonymous said...

I am a big police supporter, but would rather see enforcement energy spent on guns, heroin dealers, hands, and human trafficking.

Anonymous said...

I hardly noticed the people. Good cover.

lmclain said...

Seig heil, Heinrich!

I don't want to break any news to the gestapo, but people have been doing all those things and more (except for the cell phone thing) since cars, radios, and food have been available. Compare the number of deaths each year to the hundreds of billions of miles driven by everyone and you'll find an extremely small number. Because your chances of being in ANY accident is extremely small. Now, it appears there is another thing we must be made aware of (so we can be even more afraid of the latest thing they think is real scary) and it's up to them to make sure we "comply" (for our own good, I think, is the reason they like) and of course, PAY for their instructions.
This is just the latest thing to squeeze money, MORE money, actually, from "we, the people".
Looking down at a stain on your shirt will get you an "interaction". So, will turning your head to talk to someone. Anything for an "interaction". What's next?? You will be required, as in "you better do it or else", to turn your phone over to an armed man who ain't taking no for an answer) for analysis (and downloading) of your phone. The "implied consent" thing. They allow you to drive and in return you allow them to do anything they want - to protect you from yourself. A ticket for looking down??!
You are really beginning to piss people off.
It's not going to get any better. Only worse.
After the gestapo have tightened the noose on THIS boogeyman for a year or two, there will be some other menace we need to be shown (we can't see the truth without their assistance).
Keep cheering.

Anonymous said...

Gangs not hands...

Anonymous said...

Excellent revenue stream

Zorro said...

next....the FART POLICE...... farting in car creates global warming....1st offense 1 thousand dollar fine and 30 days in jail...

Anonymous said...

Who cares about the real issues. We need more money. Problem is making more money and not addressing real problems = less respect.

Anonymous said...

Seems like a small number of offensives. My commute to work is about 2 miles each way and I always see al least 3 people texting every day.

Anonymous said...

I doubt that it is a profit opportunity. Do you know how much Judges make along with the ancillary staffing? How about building a courthouse?

Anonymous said...

I personally am tired of distracted drivers creating an unsafe traffic conditions. Driving a vehicle is dangerous when the drivers views texting more important then the task at hand.

Anonymous said...

And yet, we still see troopers speeding down the highways, talking on THEIR phones, and focused on their mounted laptop computers......

Anonymous said...

Do as I say, not as I do. I say if cops can do it, so can everyone else! Let people take whatever bs "course" the cops do to be allowed to drive while on their phones, laptops, etc. If cops can pass the test, anyone can, it's not like they hire geniuses... just bullies with a badge and gun.

Anonymous said...

As to cops, I've met a few good ones, but most are "bad apples" that are attracted to the profession by THEIR psychological needs. And all those bad apples support one another, train others to be like them, and cover up their bad deeds. The good ones can't wait to get out and collect their pensions. The bad ones hate to leave.