Saturday, August 23, 2008

Risk a hands-free cell phone violation while reporting a DUI driver

You can help keep Central Coast roads and highways safer by reporting California DUI - drunk and unsafe drivers. California Highway Patrol officers said doing so could save a life.

Reporting an unsafe driver is as easy as picking up your cell phone and calling 911. According to law enforcement officers, more and more people are doing just that.

With so many cars on the road, it is impossible for law enforcement officers to be everywhere at once. That is why they are asking for your help in reporting drunk or reckless drivers.

The CHP Dispatch Center in San Luis Obispo receives between 18 and 20 such calls a day. Many of them are from motorists reporting a drunk driver.

Officers said it is not that more people are driving drunk, it is that technology is making it easier for people to report it.

It's because people have cellular phones now. It's made it more easier for people and more convenient for people to be able to report it.

Picking up the phone to report an impaired driver could be the most important call you ever make.

In many cases the report has come in, police found the impaired driver and removed him off the highway and in turn, and maybe it saved somebody's life.

There is an exception to the new law that forbids the use of a cell phone while driving if you are using your phone to report an emergency.

Officers warn drivers that if they are caught using their cell phones without a hands-free device and say they were using it to report an emergency, the story will be checked out. A citation will be issued if the driver is not telling the truth.