With new law in place, CHP cracking down on distracted drivers

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A new California law prohibits drivers from even holding cellphones in their hands. (KABC)

California Highway Patrol officers are on the lookout for distracted drivers in April, recognized as National Distracted Driving Awareness month.

On Jan. 1, a new California law (Assembly Bill 1785) went into effect, requiring all drivers to keep cellphones out of their hands. The law says a cellphone needs to be mounted with a device to the windshield or dashboard of a motorist's vehicle.

Under the new law, a driver may activate or deactivate a feature or function of the cellphone or wireless communication device by swiping or tapping its screen.

CHP Officer Roberto Gomez says the goal is to change driving behavior not only during April, but year-round.

"You're driving a 2,000-pound vehicle and you could easily run into somebody and cause an injury or even a death," Gomez said.

"Distracted driving is absolutely avoidable, but it continues to be a serious problem among drivers. Too many lives are lost every year due to distracted driving," CHP Commissioner Joe Farrow said.

"We believe that through continued education and enforcement, the number of deaths and injuries can be reduced."
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trafficcellphone distractionsdistracted drivingCHPLos Angeles
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