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Tougher Distracted Driving Penalties Take Effect in B.C.

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If you live in British Columbia and you are in traffic today, you may want to leave your phone alone. The government has imposed new rules today that will see distracted driving fines increase.

New rules roll out today will not only include a heftier hit to the wallet, but a boost in demerit points. First-time offenders are now looking at a fine of $543 dollars as well as four demerit points. For the second offence, you’ll be on the hook for more than $800.

If you get caught a third time, the fine can be as much as $1,600. Major offenders could be slapped with fines of approximately $15,000. Over the past three years, approximately 50,000 distracted driving tickets have been issued annually.

Statistics from 2014 show 66 deaths, and 630 serious injuries, with distracted and inattentive driving as a major contributing factor.

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