Distracted driving will be targeted in a unique way in Regina.
In the hopes of stopping those who use cellphones while driving, Regina Police Service is adopting a new measure.
Next month officers will ride city transit buses to spot those blatantly using handheld devices or concealing that they are.
“Have officers on the buses and then officers out there to do enforcement when we spot someone using their handheld device,” Police Chief Evan Bray explained.
A similar scheme was done by Ottawa police in Dec. 2016.
“Distracted driving is prevalent it doesn’t discriminate between age, race or gender,” Bray argued.
“All you have to do is pull up to a light, look left and right and guaranteed you are going to see someone on their phone.”
That sentiment is echoed by those with the best vantage point: the bus driver.
“Everybody seems to be in a rush to get nowhere,” said Don Baker, president of the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 588.
“It doesn’t have to be cellphone use it can be anything — eating, reading a book, looking at a piece of paper in your hand while trying to drive.”
Baker chuckled at the lengths drivers will go to conceal the fact they are using a cellphone. But he said he believes drivers are just as distracted by the hands-free devices mounted on the dashboard.
“Getting a song or finding a map or whatever and they are still driving,” Baker said.
Regina Police Service will reveal more about its bus plans at the next board of police commission on Feb. 22, 2017.
A fine for driving without due care and attention is $280.