RCMP-policed areas of Halifax have seen a 200 per cent increase so far this year in distracted driving charges.
Halifax District RCMP say the number of distracted driving charges issued by them between Jan. 1 and March 31 rose from 27 in 2018, to 81 in 2019.
All of the 2019 charges were related to phone use.
“If you are using your phone and it’s in your hands, you can be charged,” said Cpl. Lisa Croteau.
The fine for using a cellphone while driving is $237.50 in Nova Scotia, with four demerit points added to a person’s driver’s licence.
Regarding cell phone use, Croteau recommends using devices that allow the driver to keep both hands on the wheel.
“Use Bluetooth if they have a vehicle that’s equipped with that, or buying equipment to use Bluetooth in their vehicle, so that they keep their hands on the wheel and pay attention while they’re driving,” she said.
“If not, pull over and use your phone.”
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Croteau adds people can call 911 if they see someone driving in an unsafe manner.