March 24, 2016 1:01 am
Updated: March 24, 2016 1:18 am

Police officers disguised as utility workers catch distracted drivers in North Vancouver

WATCH: Police are using a new tool to catch distracted drivers; a cherry picker.

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Standing in a cherry picker high above a busy North Vancouver thoroughfare, Sgt. Bryce Petterson looks like a utility worker going about his business.

In reality, he is watching traffic and spotting distracted drivers who are then given tickets by officers on the ground.

“There’s nobody looking at me up here,” Petterson said. “I’ve only seen one person actually lean forward and look up here at me. They all think I’m just a worker.”

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Meanwhile, police are still waiting for the B.C. government to increase fines and demerit points.

READ MORE: Woman with 14 distracted driving tickets still driving, only has 12 demerit points

“We are working towards some increased penalties for distracted driving and I’m optimistic that we’ll see something within the next month or so, before end of session,” Public Safety Minister Mike Morris said.

Police say disguising an officer as a utility worker could easily save a life.

“For the person that’s on their phone, this is one more way for us [to get] the message to them. We are taking it seriously and so should they,” Cpl. Richard de Jong said.

– With files from Catherine Urquhart

© 2016 Shaw Media

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