The following information was released by the Los Alamitos Police Department.
As part of this month’s Distracted Driving Awareness Month campaign, Los Alamitos Police will be enforcing “zero tolerance” to those texting or operating hand-held cell phones during the month of April. Drivers who break the law and place themselves and others in danger will be cited. The current minimum ticket cost is $159, with subsequent tickets costing at least $279.
Distracted driving is a serious traffic safety concern that puts everyone on the road at risk. As a result, law enforcement across the state, including the Los Alamitos Police, are increasingly cracking down on cell phone use and texting. This April will see over 225 local agencies plus the CHP conducting zero tolerance enforcements.
“We take the issue of distracted driving very seriously” said Los Alamitos Police Traffic Sergeant Maria O’Connell. “Cell phone use and texting while driving is such a serious concern that we are directing our officers to enforce the law with zero tolerance. Is that text message or cell phone call really worth $159?”
Drivers who use hand-held devices are four times as likely to get into crashes serious enough to injure themselves. Younger, inexperienced drivers under 20 years old have the highest proportion of distraction-related fatal crashes. In addition, studies show that texting while driving can delay a driver’s reaction time just as severely as having a blood alcohol content of a legally drunk driver.
Studies show that there is no difference in the risks between hands-free and hand-held cell phone conversations, both of which can result in “inattention blindness” which occurs when the brain isn’t seeing what is clearly visible because the driver’s focus is on the phone conversation and not on the road. When over one-third of your brain’s functioning that should be on your driving moves over to cell phone talking, you can become a cell phone “zombie.”
“Turn off your phone and put it out of reach as you get into the car” said Christopher J. Murphy, Director of the California Office of Traffic Safety. “Think before you call or text someone. If there is a chance they may be driving let it wait. It’s not worth it.”
File photo by C.E.H. Wiedel of the Los Alamitos Civic Center.
- Los Alamitos residents encouraged to attend joint meeting of City Commissions (oc-breeze.com)
- Apartment fire on Green Avenue in Los Alamitos (oc-breeze.com)
- Shade Structure dedication at the City of Los Alamitos USA Water Polo National Training Center on Wednesday, March 14, 2012 (oc-breeze.com)
- Los Alamitos police blotter, January 13 to January 19 (oc-breeze.com)
- Los Alamitos police blotter, March 9 to March 15 (oc-breeze.com)
- Rossmoor police blotter, March 1 to March 17 (oc-breeze.com)