Waynesboro, Va. -- It has been almost three months since texting and driving became a primary offense in the state, allowing police officers to issue charges for distracted driving.
"Most of the ones we see are kind of like the fender benders where they rear end someone," said Sgt. Brian Edwards with the Waynesboro Police Department.
"I've been in the uncomfortable person in the passenger seat many of times, just wishing that they would hang up and drive," said motorist Jeff Nicholson.
Since texting and driving became a primary offense, Waynesboro Police has issued zero citations. The police department admits it has received some phone calls about distracted drivers.
"But by the time we get to them or before we get to them, before they leave the city limits, we may not have all the evidence we need," said Sgt. Edwards.
He says anytime drivers hide their phones below their seats or anywhere beside them, it makes it difficult to prove anything in court.
"The proof that we need, beyond a reasonable doubt in court is that a person is actually trying to enter numbers or numbers on their phone," said Sgt. Edwards.
Another hard part of enforcing the law against texting and driving is that officers could get distracted trying to catch someone in the act.
"That could be dangerous if the officer is also moving at the same time. We don't encourage our officers to be looking at the other vehicles while its driving," said Sgt. Edwards.
"I'm not sure there is a good solution right now. It's (cellphones) a powerful distraction," said Nicholson.
Virginia State Police collects statistics on texting and driving citations on a quarterly basis. Those numbers should be available at the beginning of October.
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