Winnipeg police are cracking down on distracted drivers as part of Canada Road Safety Week and they’re using plain clothes spotters to help do it.
Spotters are out today at the intersection of Harkness Street and Stradbrook Avenue.
They’re taking note of drivers on their phones and alerting other officers up ahead who pull the driver over and issue tickets.
The penalty for being caught using your phone illegally behind the wheel in Manitoba is a $200 fine and five demerits. It’s the stiffest penalty in Canada.
Winnipeg Police Constable Jason Michalyshen says drivers still aren’t getting the message.
“From our perspective, we’re not seeing any improvement,” he says. “We’re just seeing way to many drivers still engaged in this activity.”
He says they did targeted enforcement like this last month too and they issued about 1300 tickets in April.
“So can you imagine if that targeted enforcement was every day, all the time, the numbers we would be coming up with?”
Michalyshen says police usually hand out between 4000-5000 tickets a year for distracted driving.
He says police would support even tougher penalties.
Canada Road Safety Week starts today.