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This month, law enforcement officers plan to strictly enforce distracted driving laws in California. People caught talking on hand-held cell phones can expect a ticket from police.

Agencies throughout the state will be on the lookout for drivers who violate laws related to distracted driving. A representative from the California Highway Patrol said there will be a zero-tolerance policy to reduce the activities drivers may engage in while they’re behind the wheel that affect their concentration and attention on their driving.

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In the Los Angeles area alone, more than 50 agencies will participate to reduce distracted driving, focusing on drivers who talk on hand-held cell phones, and also do other distracting things such as texting, putting on makeup, shaving, and reading.

Texting while driving will earn a driver a ticket that’s as much as $159 for the first violation, and could be hundreds of dollars more for every violation after that. The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department issued a statement that they take distracted driving very seriously, and they are placing extra deputies on duty to enforce laws with zero tolerance for talking on a cell or texting while a driver is behind the wheel.

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) urged a nationwide bad on using portable electronic devices by drivers. In addition to that ban the agency called for last December was a ban on drivers’ nonemergency use of hands-free devices and hand-held cell phones. According to the Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, more than 3,000 people died in crashes in 2010 that were believed to be as a result of someone involved in the collision driving while distracted.

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