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Park City Police Department Reports No New Distracted Driving Accidents Since Enforcement Shifts

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Officers only pulled over one person for distracted driving during their 6 dedicated shifts from October 5-10. But during those shifts they found 59 other driving violations. 

Phil Kirk with the Park City Police Department said since the enforcement took place there have been no reported pedestrian or cycling accidents. 

“Since then, we haven't really seen any distracted driving caused accidents,” Kirk said. “So I guess, the enforcement there we're working on seems to have helped.”

He said this is their first time doing any distracted driving specific enforcements so it’s not clear if only having one violation is normal. 

“So we do all kinds of traffic enforcement, but not specifically targeting distracted drivers,” he said. “So it's hard to compare any numbers from previous times, because we really haven't done that.” 

The police department is concerned about distracted drivers after 11 pedestrian and bike accidents that have happened so far this year. Kirk said even though this is the first time they’ve done specific enforcements it likely won’t be their last.

“We've had our fair share of all serious accidents involving bicycles and pedestrians, especially the beginning part of the year and one fatality,” he said. “So we continue to do enforcement, we're hoping to get some additional funding from the state.”

Kirk said accidents are more likely during ski season, when there are more tourists in town. 

“I think the wintertime, when we have more people here that are visitors for skiing and special events, that we do see an increase in the number of drivers that are using GPS to find directions to getting to their location,” he said. “And when that happens, then you see more drivers are not seeing what they need to be seeing out there [like] other vehicles, pedestrians, bicycles.”

He said the department is giving out some citations for distracted drivers, but they’re mostly focusing on education.

 

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