Police & Fire

New Brunswick Cops to Target Drivers Using Phones


NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ — You might be better off waiting to check that text message.

New Brunswick police plan to zero in on distracted drivers for the next three weeks, beginning tomorrow, April 1, according to the department. The “high-visibility” crackdown will focus on drivers who talk or text on their handheld cellphones, according to city police.

The move is part of the state’s “UDrive. UText. UPay.” campaign, which will also take place in other municipalities.

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“Distracted driving is a serious issue on our roadways,” Gary Poedubicky, acting director of the New Jersey Division of Highway Traffic Safety, said in a statement.

Federal statistics show that 3,179 people died as a result of distracted driving in 2014. An estimated 431,000 people sustained injuries in related crashes.

Talking or texting on a handheld phone while driving is against the law here and in several other states.

Even so, “the practice appears to be widespread,” according to the brief from city police. A recent state survey found that 67 percent of the population sees people driving and talking “very often.”

For years, various industry and advocacy groups have argued that texting and driving could be more dangerous than drinking and driving.

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