Law enforcement agencies across the state will be stepping up enforcement of distracted driving in the coming weeks.
The official crackdown starts April 8 and continues until the end of the month. Officers will be working overtime looking for distractions including drivers who are texting behind the wheel.
"We can't do it ourselves," says Lt. Gordon Shank of the Minnesota State Patrol. "We need help from everyone involved, we need to make sure people are speaking up, whether you're the passenger in the car with a distracted driver or you are the one driving, you need to make the commitment and responsibility to put the distractions down and drive."
The State Patrol says distracted driving-related crashes kill, on average, 45 people in Minnesota each year and injure hundreds more. Last year's crackdown netted more than 1,500 citations for texting and driving.