Kauai police crack down on drivers using cell phones

Kauai police crack down on drivers using cell phones

LIHUE, Hawaii (AP) - Kauai police say they have issued 539 tickets to people using cell phones while driving, an offense that can come with a pricey $300 fine for first-time law-breakers.

The Garden Island reports that Hawaii's fines for using hand-held mobile electronic devices while driving rank far higher than the national average of $112.

The high cost is meant to deter Aloha State drivers from using cell phones while driving.

During the fiscal year 2014, police departments statewide issued more than 11,000 citations for distracted driving. Hawaii Department of Transportation Director Ford Fuchigami says texting while driving is one of the main distractions.

The state bans the use of hand-held devices while driving and it's also illegal for drivers under age 18 to talk on the phone, even if using a hands-free device.

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