West New York police, sheriff’s office cracking down on texting and driving


The West New York Police Department and the Hudson County Sheriff’s Office are two of many law enforcement agencies that will be participating in a texting and driving crackdown next month.

Members of the Hudson County Sheriff's Office participating in West New York National Night Out in 2016.
Members of the Hudson County Sheriff’s Office participating in West New York’s National Night Out event in 2016.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

Beginning April 1 and running through April 21, the statewide law enforcement initiative known as “U Drive. U Text. You Pay.” will target motorists who engage in dangerous distracted driving behaviors such as talking on hand-held cell phones and sending text messages while driving.

“As the Mayor of our Town, ensuring that our community is safe will always be my most important job,” West New York Mayor Felix Roque, also the commissioner of the Department of Public Safety, said in a statement.

“I am fully behind the municipal and statewide efforts to crack down on distracted drivers and I applaud the efforts of our West New York Police Department for keeping our residents safe.”

In a recent survey conducted by the Fairleigh Dickinson University’s PublicMind Poll for the Division of Highway Traffic Safety, 67 percent of respondents said they “very often” see people driving and talking on a hand-held cell phone.

Additionally, 42 percent of respondents said they “very often” see driver’s texting.

“From April 1st to April 21st, 2017, my officers will be out in force looking for distracted drivers and issuing tickets to anyone caught texting while driving,” County Sheriff Frank Schillari said in a different statement.

“Distracted driving is now one of the leading causes of crashes in the state and the country, last year over 3,000 people were killed, nationwide, in distracted driving related crashes,” he added, noting that the sheriff’s office will target distracted drivers after April 21st.

U Drive, U Text, U Pay is a national campaign funded by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and is distributed by the New Jersey Department of Transportation, modeled after the “Click It or Ticket” and the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over Campaigns.”

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  1. Great! Every sine day I see people who are at a red light that’s turned green, but they don’t notice it because they are too wrapped up in their cellphone, they don’t notice the light has changed. They need to be alerted by the people in the cars behind them with a beep. It blows my mind how some people drive in WNY.. Stopping on the crosswalk at a red light, parking on a crosswalk , completely blocking any pedestrians access. Running red lights, not using their turn signals, or simply turning them on 5 feet before they turn. Among other things..
    I know I’m not a perfect driver, but their ahould be a minimum since of understanding when it comes to the privilege of driving.