Stiff distracted driving penalties in effect in B.C.

Stiff distracted driving penalties in effect in B.C.

File photo courtesy CBC.

File photo courtesy CBC.

Getting caught on your mobile phone while driving will now cost you more for insurance premiums as the province targets distracted drivers.

In November, Attorney General David Eby announced the province was looking to designate distracted driving as a high-risk behaviour under the ICBC Driver Risk Premium program.

That would put distracted driving on par with impaired driving and excessive speeding.

It would mean two distracted driving tickets in a three-year period would see penalties rise to as much as $2,000, an increase of $740 over the previous penalties.

That would be on top of their regular insurance premium.

The province at the time of the announcement said 12,000 drivers in B.C. had multiple distracted driving tickets during a three-year time frame.

The changes are expected to contribute $3 million to $5 million in additional premiums annually.

Despite some of the toughest distracted driving penalties in the country, Eby said 25 per cent of all fatalities on provincial roads are linked to distracted driving and there were no improvements in those numbers.


Andy NealAndy Neal

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