BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — You might see more state police on the roads this month. They’re cracking down on distracted drivers as part of Distracted Driver Awareness Month.
Corey Miller likes to practice safe driving habits whenever he gets behind the wheel of a car.
“I’m a nurse. I’ve seen what happens when you do distracted driving. I’m good,” explained the 27-year-old from Buffalo.
But, according to New York State Trooper James O’Callaghan, many of us are distracted on the roads. He said distracted driving is the second most common contributor to car crashes, only behind speeding. O’Callaghan said they tend to see it most with teen drivers who have less experience on the road.
“77% of teen drivers think that they can drive distracted safely and that is obviously an alarming number,” he said.
Experts suggest putting your phone in a safe place like the glove compartment or the trunk of your car to avoid a potential distraction. It’s also recommended you limit the number of passengers in your car, avoid eating or changing the radio station while driving, and pull over if you’re tired.
In New York, drivers cannot use handheld cell phones or other electronic devices while driving. Reading or sending texts, talking to others, playing games, taking pictures, or doing anything else on a cell phone can result in a ticket. A conviction can lead to a fine of up to $450 (depending on the number of previous violations,) driver’s license demerit points, and/or the loss of driving privileges.
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Ali Touhey is an anchor and reporter who joined the News 4 team in 2023. View more of her work here.