Police use undercover taxi cab to catch distracted drivers

Drivers who sneak a peek at their cell phone while on the road in the next month could pay a steep price for their curiosity.

Deas Island RCMP Traffic Services, along with the Delta Police Traffic Services, launched their 2014 distracted driving enforcement blitz on Valentine's Day aimed at catching people whose attention isn't fully on the road.

In order to spot drivers being sneaky with their cell phones, police had to be a little sneaky themselves. An undercover officer posing as a taxi cabbie standing outside his broken-down vehicle acts as a spotter for distracted drivers. The cell phone he's pretending to be on is actually a radio he uses to send to police hiding further down the road.

"[Distracted driving] is quickly becoming the number one causal factor of major accidents," said Deas Island RCMP Cpl. Robert McDonald. "So, speed used to be it, we've taken care of speed, we've taken care of impaired driving, now every time we go to an accident scene the number one reason we have is distracted driving."

Ignoring the law can bring steep penalties, including a $368 fine and six points from your driver's license.

The campaign is in partnership with ICBC, which has a website dedicated to cracking down on distracted driving bad habits.

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