The Maui Police Department will be participating in the national “U Drive. U Text. U Pay” campaign. Additional enforcement of Hawaii’s Mobile Electronic Device Law is planned starting on April 6th and continuing until April 18th.
Law enforcement personnel nationwide will be using a combination of traditional and innovative strategies to crack down on motorists who text while driving. This effort is a part of the national “U Drive. U Text. U Pay” high-visibility enforcement campaign that combines intense enforcement of distracted driving laws with advertising and media outreach to let people know about the enforcement and convince them to obey the law.
Violating Hawaii’s Mobile Electronic Device law, which became effective on July 1st, 2013, can be costly. Under Hawaii Revised Statutes 291C-137, anyone using a Mobile Electronic Device (MED) while driving faces a fine of $297 and $347 if in a school or construction zone. MED’s include, but are not limited to: cellular phones, tablet computers, digital cameras, and gaming devices.
The Maui Police Department urges all drivers to remember to use a hands free device, pull over or just wait until they reach their destination before using any Mobile Electronic Device. Our primary goal during the operation is to make the roadways of Maui County safe for the entire public to use by reducing the number of motor vehicle collisions caused by distracted driving.
The University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute’s 2012 “Teen Driver Distraction Study” reports that a quarter of teens respond to a text message once or more every time they drive, and 20 percent of teens and 10 percent of parents admit that they have extended, multi-message text conversations while driving.
During 2013 a total of 3,154 people were killed and an estimated additional 424,000 were injured in motor vehicle crashes involving distracted drivers nationwide. This represents a 6.7 percent decrease in the number of fatalities recorded in 2012.
Anytime someone takes their eyes off the road, hands off the wheel, or mind of the task of driving, they risk causing a crash. For more information, please visit www.distraction.gov.