A video posted recently on Twitter by a B.C. driver shows a Surrey RCMP officer approaching a driver at a McDonald’s drive-thru, who was apparently using the phone to pay for his food using an app. While the officer says he was in the area on an unrelated matter, he issued him a warning about using a handheld device while driving (via News 1130).
— Tej Dhaliwal (@DrDangles87) May 8, 2019
“Officers were in the area following up on an unrelated investigation when they observed this driver on their phone. They were not conducting targeted enforcement in the drive-thru,” explained Surrey RCMP in a tweet, while adding that under the BC Motor Vehicle Act, parking lots and drive-thru are considered part of the roadway and are subject to enforcement of the BC Motor Vehicle Act.
Update: Surrey RCMP note the driver was allegedly using a device, prior to heading into the McDonald’s drive-thru, hence the verbal warning:
No ticket was issued. The officer issued a verbal warning to the driver after observing them allegedly using a device while driving prior to entering the drive thru area. Discretion is used by officers when enforcing this law, with public safety always being top of mind.
— Surrey RCMP (@SurreyRCMP) May 9, 2019
Lawyer Kyla Lee with Acumen Law called the situation “ridiculous” and “bizarre,” noting that many customers rely on apps to get their food.
“Technology that’s used at drive-thrus allows people to pay using their phones, allows people to order on the app while they’re waiting for their food in the drive-thru area, so they don’t have to sit parked in an idling vehicle for that long,” she says.
“They’re not moving while looking at their phones, it’s not high-speed moving traffic and likely to rear-end another person. It’s doesn’t fulfill the purposes of the prohibition on the electronic device while driving legislation.”
Meanwhile, McDonald’s also weighed in with a tweet saying they don’t recommend people use their phones while in the drive-thru.
The response was to the alleged man in the video, named Parbjot S, who said “I use their damn app for collecting stickers. [I’m] the one [in] the video getting ticketed. Can you dm me some coupons.”
We do not encourage the usage of our app while operating a vehicle. Driver's responsibility is to operate the vehicle in a safe manner and obey all motor vehicle laws. Drivers should always switch off their vehicle’s engine and apply the handbrake when using a mobile device.
— McDonald's Canada (@McDonaldsCanada) May 11, 2019
Well, what do you guys have to say about this?