Local News

Cary police officers target drivers who text

Posted June 18, 2014 3:04 p.m. EDT
Updated June 18, 2014 7:34 p.m. EDT

— Distracted driving has been a contributing factor in 71 crashes in Cary since 2013. Police say that's why officers were on the roads Wednesday, targeting drivers who text.

Police stopped 89 drivers along Cary Parkway and Maynard Road for various violations, including texting while driving, speeding, expired registration and seat belt violations. Many received warnings.

Police say it's hard to prove whether someone is texting or using their phone for things such as GPS navigation, which is legal. Texting while driving in North Carolina carries a $100 fine, plus $190 in court costs.

"We know texting is a big piece of distracted driving," said Cary police Lt. Steve Wilkins. "A distracted driver who's texting may not have their eyes on the road at all, and they may not see that threat. They may not perceive a hazard."

Police say distracted drivers can take as long as three seconds to stop their vehicle if there is a problem, which translates into 264 feet.

"It's so tempting to use that phone while you're in your car, while you're driving. That's what we're trying to share with people, that's a very dangerous thing to do," Wilkins said.