500 people caught texting and driving in one week

A WARNING to anyone who thinks it's okay to text and drive in the lead up to the holiday period.

As part of NSW Police's Operation Safe Arrival, police have released footage of a number of drivers caught in the act of texting and driving in order to get the message across that drivers will be caught.

So far this year officers have issued 37,770 infringements for people using a handheld device while driving.

More than 500 people have already been issued tickets for mobile phone use since the start of Operation Safe Arrival last Friday.

Inspector Robert Toynton from the State's Traffic & Highway Patrol Command is fed-up with people who think the rules don't apply to them.

"Not a day goes by that we don't see people blatantly using a mobile phone while driving," Insp Toynton said.

"During Operation Safe Arrival, you will see more police including officers on motorcycles on the look-out for people using mobile phones while they are behind the wheel.

"Don't be the next person to get the tap on the window from one of our officers.

"It is unfortunate that a lot of the people who are caught are young people who do not realise that they are risking their lives and the lives of others every time they take their eyes off the road to use their phone.

"No driving ability or driving experience will help you when you are driving blind to the road or to oncoming cars."

Operation Safe Arrival launched last Friday and will continue into the New Year, ending on Monday January 2, 2017.

During the operation police want road users to think about the #Five2Arrive; five simple tips for road users in order to arrive home safely:

  • Don't speed.
  • Don't drink and drive.
  • Wear a seatbelt.
  • Put your phone away, and
  • Take regular breaks.

Double demerits begin after midnight tonight - at 12.01am Friday - and will continue through to Monday January 2, 2017.

In the six days since the start of the operation there have been four lives lost.

The State's road toll stands at 372 lives lost, which is 35 more lives lost than this time last year.

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