I’m Bill Kingston with today’s commentary. You would think that if you’re getting behind the wheel of a car or truck you would only have one thing on your mind. But a disturbing trend is mapping out for a seventh year in a row. The O.P.P. raised the concern this week in a province-wide email saying distracted driving is set to surpass drinking and driving as the causal factor in deadly collisions. Twelve people have died in Ontario so far from distracted driving. The same holds true south of the border as a study out this week by the University of Southern California shows 87 per cent people surveyed know texting or emailing behind the wheel is dangerous but they still do it. The biggest culprit are millennials – people from the ages of 18 to 34. The only way to battle this is for law enforcement to get tougher and to get more awareness of the danger into the school system. People need to realize that it’s not about them, it’s about the other road users out there. Is that one email or text message worth killing or maiming somebody else on the road – some innocent person or family? Hardly. But stakeholders need to take a serious look at this because, with distracted driving on the rise, the $280 fines don’t appear to be sending the message.
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