New York State announced this week that a new law to prevent distracted driving, has resulted in 118,757 tickets since July 2011 for using an electronic handheld device while driving. Governor Cuomo introduced legislation to strengthen enforcement of texting-while-driving violations in June 2011, and signed the new penalties into law in July 2011. The legislation makes using an electronic handheld device while driving primary traffic offense, giving law enforcement the power to stop drivers solely for engaging in this activity. In addition, the Governor increased the penalty for using a cellular phone without a hands-free device or a handheld device while driving from two to three points on one’s license through changes in state regulations. The Governor’s Office said that from July 12, 2011 to February 7, 2012, New York State has issued 7, 495 tickets for texting-while-driving and 111,262 for using a handheld electronic device while driving.
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