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The RCMP are pleased to hear that the provincial government is pushing for stricter penalties for distracted driving.

Provincial legislation was introduced Monday that would see an automatic three-day license suspension added to existing distracted driving fines which include a $200 ticket and 5 demerits.

RCMP Sergeant Paul Manaigre notes the RCMP support any measure that makes roads safer.

“The message isn’t getting to people. The RCMP side of that, we are absolutely for anything that promotes safer driving. If we can get people off the phone, great. If it is going to take a three-day suspension to get that message across then let’s start with that and go from there.”

Manaigre says these changes would make distracted driving penalties very close to the penalties for driving under the influence.

“It has got the same amount of weight because I think if we look at the number of deaths on our roadways that are alcohol-related and distracted driving-related, they are very similar so why not have the penalties the same. People are losing their lives over a device, we need to get the message across that this has to stop.”

Manaigre says they are also doing what they can to educate the public of the dangers of distracted driving through drivers ed classes as well as selective traffic enforcement. Steinbach Online

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