Tucson looks to strengthen hands-free law as Oro Valley celebrates 1 year

Tucson looks to strengthen hands-free law as Oro Valley celebrates 1 year
(Source: Town of Oro Valley)

ORO VALLEY, AZ (Tucson News Now) - It has been one year since Oro Valley launched its hands-free ordinance aimed at cracking down on distracted driving.

The law makes it a primary offense, meaning drivers can get pulled over immediately.

The Oro Valley Police Department said it believes the ordinance has been successful.

From January to November, officers pulled over about 1,500 drivers, according to the OVPD. A majority of those were warnings because the first nine months of the year focused on educating drivers about the new law.

Once the grace period was up, officers issued more than 80 citations. OVPD said its officers saw a decrease in the number of drivers stopped following the conclusion of the educational phase.

Moving forward, the police department said its traffic unit will organize hands-free enforcement operations.

Meanwhile, the City of Tucson plans to strengthen its hands-free ordinance. Unlike Oro Valley, drivers in Tucson must be pulled over for something else like speeding before officers can give them a ticket. City council will discuss possible changes at meeting on Jan. 9.

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