Distracted driving is now taking more lives that drinking and driving. It’s an alarming trend, but in the two years since the fines and penalties for distracted driving went up, people have continued to use their phones behind the wheel.

A person using their cell phone while driving is three times more likely to be involved in a crash than a focused driver. Provincial numbers show there were nearly 25,000 distracted driving convictions in 2017, and already this year we’re on track to set a new record.

Cst. Mike Hibbs with the RCMP/Sheriff Integrated Traffic Unit says education is what will ultimately change the trend. Consistent enforcement is also helpful, but educating young people before they get their licenses will be most effective in spurring a culture shift and making Alberta’s roads safer.