Police in Clayton County, Georgia, Issue Numerous Tickets Through Distracted Driving Detail
CLAYTON COUNTY, GA. – According to an online news report published at fox5atlanta.com, police officers in Clayton County, Georgia, issued numerous tickets through a distracted driving detail. The detail indicated to police that a lot of work remains before drivers stop using their phones behind the wheel.*
Since July 2018, it has been illegal in Georgia to hold a cell phone or other electronic device while driving. Under the Hands Free Georgia Act, drivers must use hands-free technology if they want to use their phones in their cars.
Police officers in the state said they initially cracked down on a lot of distracted drivers when the hands-free law went into effect, but they soon saw a reduction in the amount of tickets they were writing. They attributed the reduction to people learning about the law and striving to avoid violations. However, it appears drivers have perhaps become complacent.
During the last two days of July, officers with the Clayton County Police Department set up a detail to catch distracted drivers along Tara Boulevard. Officers watched drivers and pulled over people who were visibly holding their phones behind the wheel. During just the two days, officers cited 70 people and placed one person under arrest for driving with a suspended license.
The Georgia Department of Transportation says that Clayton County Police have responded to almost 6,500 vehicle accidents so far this year, from which 25 people were killed and 2,179 were injured. Distracted driving plays a large role in accidents.
“It’s really, really unsafe for people to be on their phones [while driving],” said Lt. Kathryn Thrift of the Clayton County Police Department. “When you’re trying to drive down the road, you shouldn’t have to worry about the person next to you on their cell phone and worry that they’re going to crash into [you].”
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