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Riverside County Sheriff’s Department to bolster patrol during Distracted Driving Awareness Month

April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month, and the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department is encouraging drivers to give the phone a break and focus on the road.

Throughout the month of April, the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department will have additional deputies on patrol specifically looking for drivers who violate the state’s hands-free cell phone law.

In 2019, 3,142 people were killed in motor vehicle crashes involving distracted drivers, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

“A driver’s primary focus should be on the road, not their cellphone,” Sergeant Kasim Bikul said. “That text message, phone call, email, video, or social media post is not worth the risk put to yourself and other motorists.”

Under current law, drivers are not allowed to hold a phone or other electronic device while behind the wheel. Drivers under 18 are not allowed to use a phone for any reason, including hands-free.

Funding for this program is provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

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