Sheriff’s plan to send out more deputies to catch distracted drivers

SIGNAL FILE PHOTO: A deputy patrols in the Santa Clarita Valley. Lorena Mejia / The Signal.

The Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station is planning to send additional deputies Monday to look for drivers on their cellphones, driving while distracted. 

The enhanced enforcement period is designed to enforce the California state law that says people are not allowed to hold their phone — whether talking, texting or using an app — while driving. 

“Distracted driving is a serious issue, but one that can be easily solved simply by putting the phone down,” Sgt. Robert Hill of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said in a press release. “That text, phone call, email or social media post can wait.” 

Those pulled over will be issued a $157 fine for the first offense.

Deputies are also asking drivers to be aware of other distractions that might take their attention off the road,  such as eating, grooming, talking to passengers, programing the GPS, etc.

“If you have an important phone call or need to program directions, pull over to a safe parking spot,” officials said in a press release. “Before driving, either silence your phone or put it somewhere you can’t reach.”

The funding for the program is provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

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