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21 tickets in 5 days: Saanich, Oak Bay cops start distracted driving blitz

Officers issued 6 in 60 minutes at one Oak Bay intersection
ICBC and Saanich police crack down on distracted driving on McKenzie Avenue March 5. (@RoadSafetyCWoo/X)

ICBC and police around the province are cracking down on distracted driving this month.

In the first five days of March, Saanich, officers issued 16 tickets.

Oak Bay police issued six phone-related tickets in an hour at the intersection of Oak Bay Avenue and Foul Bay Road on March 5.

The month-long campaign aims to combat distracted driving with police amping up enforcement.

READ ALSO: Driver guilty in Saanich crash that left 11-year-old with catastrophic brain injuries

Anything that draws attention from driving is deemed distracted driving – even when stopped. According to ICBC statistics, drivers using a hand-held phone are 3.6 times more likely to crash. The law applies even when stopped at a red light or in bumper-to-bumper traffic.

Alongside the danger aspect, each ticket issued for distracted driving includes a fine of $368 and four driver penalty points. Drivers with four or more points on their driving record at the end of a 12-month period pays a driver penalty point premium.

According to ICBC, hands-free means a Bluetooth, wired headset or speakerphone that can be operated with one touch or voice commands. Anyone with a learner’s or novice liccence cannot use electronic devices, even hands-free.

READ ALSO: What exactly counts as distracted driving in B.C.?

About the Author: Saanich News Staff

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