SGI says it was a record-breaking month of October for distracted driving tickets issued throughout the province.

Police across the province combined to doll out 793 distracted driving tickets with that being SGI's Traffic Safety Spotlight focus of the month.

Manager of Media Relations for SGI Tyler McMurchy said there are two reasons the numbers are so high.

"On one hand the results tell us police are very good at catching distracted drivers and they're very focused on doing that," he said. "On the other hand, it's clear that police wouldn't be able to issue as many tickets as they did if there weren't a lot of people still driving distracted."

Six-hundred-and-eighty-eight of the tickets were for use of a cell phone while driving, which carries a $280 fine, four demerits under SGI's Safe Driver Recognition program, and one-week vehicle seizures for a second infraction if it's within a year's time.

"I'm not ringing the alarm bells on this yet," McMurchy said. "The numbers that we're always most focused on are the results of distracted driving, so the collisions, the injuries, and the fatalities. In 2017 those numbers attributed to distracted driving went down from the year before."

In 2017 distracted driving accounted for 6,000 collisions, resulting in the death of 26 people and more than 950 injuries.

The remaining 105 tickets were for driving without due care or attention which includes a long list of things, like watching a movie while driving.

"When police write that it's just when they observe driving behaviour that indicates that the driver is not focused on driving," he said. "They could be distracted by anything, whether it's a sloppy burger, eating, applying makeup, they have a pet in their lap."

Police also handed 6,892 tickets for speeding/aggressive driving, 318 impaired driving offences (279 criminal code charges), and 394 tickets regarding seatbelts/car seats.

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