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Maui police step up texting-while-driving enforcement

  • STAR-ADVERTISER / AUG. 2011

    In this file photo, Maui police blocked a road in Kahului. Officers issued 764 citations during last year’s “U Drive. U Text. U Pay” campaign.

WAILUKU >> Maui police will issue citations to drivers who use cellphones while driving through April 13 as part of a national campaign.

Officers issued 764 citations during last year’s “U Drive. U Text. U Pay” campaign.

State law says drivers using mobile devices in school and construction zones can earn fines up to $347.

Mobile devices include electronics like tablet computers, digital cameras and gaming devices.

Officer Timothy Hodgens said in a news release that distracted drivers risk causing crashes.

Police say drivers should remember to use hands-free devices and wait to use electronic devices until they’ve pulled over or reached their destination.

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  • What a waste of time and effort. As long as hands free devices are allowed which causes similar “distractions”, this enforcement is nothing more than a police state increasing its revenue. Make all illegal or none illegal.

    It is stupid to give a ticket to someone stuck in traffic using their cell phone like what happened not too long ago when their was total gridlock going out west.

  • I hope all Counties will promote same and perhaps use same emphasis periodically throughout the year…keeping in mind safety for everyone…had someone meandering into my lane on King Street while distracted…one of many. The number of infractions and effective enforcement / collection of fines would make this a “cash cow” of traffic violation revenue. By the way, the violation dollars is not “earned”…it’s a should be referred to as a penalty for a traffic violation.

  • Why does law enforcement need a campaign to enforce this law. Should be enforced 24/7. A special squad that uses monies collected from fines should be set up and run 24/7, it will pay for itself. Then you can move to enforce loud music from cars, loud exhaust, seat belts and all those other violations that are not enforced on a daily basis.

    • The free publicity gained from announcing a “campaign” can potentially influence the behavior of many more people than can quiet routine enforcement.

      • Absolutely correct, they are also warning people. Unfortunately fines collected go into the State’s general fund. Counties don’t see any of fines, maybe parking if they use a county ordinance.

  • i say kick it up a notch by adding at least one point on their driving abstract; pay for fine and increased insurance premiums for 3 – 5 extra years, like they do with dui. prosecutors/cops also need to be able to subpoena cell phone records to check up on all major/fatal accidents, just as they require blood tests for driver alcohol/drug in fatalities.

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