Authorities cracking down on distracted driving in April

For National Distracted Driving Awareness Month

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - April is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month, so the California Highway Patrol, Bakersfield Police Department and Kern County Sheriff's Office are on high alert, hoping to decrease the number of distracted drivers on the road.

In 2017, CHP gave out a total of 2116 citations for distracted driving, with 625 of them given out in April, which is about one third of the whole year's citations in just one month.

This year, they plan to do the same. They'll be on high alert, focusing efforts on catching drivers who are talking or texting. 

CHP's PIO Robert Rodriguez says people need to be aware they are not allowed to even hold their phone after a law passed in 2017. They can tap or swipe their phone if it's mounted in a secure place in their car. 

A first-time citation for distracted driving can be between $160 and $180 and that can double for a second time offense.

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