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CHICO, Calif. – Yesterday the Chico Police Department issued 44 citations in a single day crackdown on cell phones by motorists. It has been unlawful to use a handheld cell phone while operating a motor vehicle since July 2008. We applaud this act of open and visible enforcement of the cell phone restrictions.

Right after the law passed there was a noticeable change in the habits of cell phone users. No longer were drivers pulling out their phones immediately after pulling out of their garages. Over the past several months, however, cell phone users have reverted back to their old habits. I cannot drive home in the evening, a drive of 5 minutes, without seeing 3-4 handheld cell phones being used by drivers. Even texting is being seen, despite the clear dangerousness of such practice.

Perhaps a similar crackdown in other north state cities such as Redding or Red Bluff would "rattle the cages" of the cell phone users again, reminding motorists that use of cell phones while driving has been outlawed because it is dangerous.

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