How Police Are Cracking Down On Distracted Driving

May 19th, 2017 / By triOS College

One of the major parts of a police officer’s duties is traffic. This can be conducting traffic stops to check seat belts or to curb drinking and driving. It can also be directing traffic at an intersection if the lights have gone out. However, one of the rising components is how police officers are really cracking down on distracted driving. How are they doing this? Keep reading to find out.

man holding phone while driving

The number of people distracted by their phones while driving is increasing. People are cautious if they see a uniformed officer and may stop what they’re doing on their cell phones if they see one.

Blending in on the Street

While many people may expect police officers in full uniforms in their squad cars, this is not always the case. In many instances, police are actually disguising themselves in order to blend in on the street so they can catch drivers while they are unawares. The reason for this is because people are more wary if they see a uniformed officer and could momentarily stop their actions on their cell phone while they pass by.

However, if the officers are not in full uniform, they are much likelier to catch someone for distracted driving. One police constable in Ottawa, according to this article, dressed as a panhandler. Instead of a sign asking for money, he used one identifying himself as a policeman. He made note of the driver and vehicle, then radioed ahead for officers in a car to pull the driver over. These officers then took the necessary course of action, often a ticket.


Marked and Unmarked Vehicles

Police officers will often use their vehicles to catch distracted drivers on their cell phones. This can be in their official, marked squad cars, or in undercover vehicles. The latter can vary, but often have the police logos and identification in a colour that blends well with the rest of the vehicle. They will also still have sirens within the car, which the officers can turn on when they catch someone.

While the unmarked vehicles are often similar models to marked police vehicles, this is not always the case. One particular instance was an awareness campaign that used a hearse instead of a typical car. The hearse and the officers did stop people who were distracted with the message “this is where you could end up” if you are distracted while driving.


Canada Road Safety Week

Canada has a Road Safety Week in order to promote all aspects of road safety, including cracking down on distracted driving. The primary distraction drivers have is their cell phone, but Road Safety Week is not limited to that. It also concerns collisions brought about by different causes. Transport Canada and the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police sponsor this national campaign as a part of Canada’s Road Safety Strategy 2025. The goal is to have Canada’s roads the safest in the world by that year.


Demonstrations for Education

There have been past demonstrations of a mock accident, which not only showed the results of distracted driving, but also pointed out how police have had additional accidents or near misses because of accidents on the road. The drivers, they say, focus on what is going on at the scene of the accident instead of on their own driving. During this particular demonstration, officers handed out tickets to those they caught in the act of distracted driving.


Let’s Get Started

Are you interested in contributing to road safety? Does becoming a police officer sound like an intriguing career to you? Consider enrolling in triOS’s Police Foundations program today to start down this path. For full details on the program, check out the Police Foundation and Security Program.