MSP troopers cracking down on distracted driving this month
OAK PARK, Mich. (FOX 2) - April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month.
This week, Michigan State Police is sending out special patrols to help cut down on distracted driving.
Starting Thursday troopers will be out in full force in unmarked vehicles around metro Detroit, targeting people who don't have their full attention on the road.
This most obvious form of distracted driving is texting and driving, of course, but authorities will be looking for much more than that. And they've seen much more than that, too.
"Some of it is pretty egregious out there. We see people that actually have Velcro on their steering wheel where they put their iPads on and they're watching Netflix as they go along on their commute. So there's a lot of stuff that happens out there and you just look at it and go, 'What the heck are you doing?'" MSP Lt. Michael Shaw told us.
The force is really concerned about the recent uptick in distracted driving-related crashes.
"We're really concerned when the 2018 stats came, which should come out at the end of this month. We know from '16 - '17 we saw it jump from 40 fatalities to 71. So we're concerned that, again, this year we're almost going to see a double digit jump for something that's totally preventable," says MSP Lt. Michael Shaw.
"If people just pay attention while they're driving down the road, we don't have these crashes anymore. We don't have these fatalities."