According to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, a new law in that state that has banned texting while driving has lead to the doubling of the number of traffic tickets related to that activity.
August represented the first full month since the law was passed in New York, and its police wrote 1,082 tickets to drivers who continued to use their mobile devices for texting while driving. This number of issued tickets was over twice the amount that were written at the same time in 2010. Within the first half of 2011, there was an average of 427 tickets that were issued on a monthly basis.
Cuomo signed this law in July and is now saying that “We were serious when this law passed: texting while driving is illegal and the law is being enforced, so don’t do it.”
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Police now have the ability to pull over a driver for the sole reason that they have been using their mobile handset while driving. This makes the behavior a primary traffic offense. The implementation of this state law has also meant that the penalty for the offense is now three points (where it had previously been two points) and can include a fine of up to $150.
In March 2011, officials from the Department of Transportation released the results of a poll to Consumer Reports magazine, which suggested that young drivers are the age group that are most likely to use a mobile phone while behind the wheel, and that among them, 30 percent had recently texted while they were driving.