Westchester County police have a message for motorists: texting while driving is not only dangerous, it’s also against the law.

Officers from the Department of Public Safety conduct special patrols to enforce the county’s no-texting ban, issuing summonses to drivers who are letting their fingers do the talking as they drive on Westchester parkways.

Texting is most popular among teens and other young people who also tend to be the newest and least experienced drivers on the road. A primary goal of the texting ban is to keep our young people safe.

Westchester became the first county in New York State to ban texting while driving when legislation was passed by the Board of Legislators in 2008 and signed into law by the county executive. The texting ban went into effect in March of 2009.

Several other counties have since followed Westchester’s lead to ban texting while driving, including Nassau, Suffolk and Schenectady counties. Additional counties are currently considering a similar ban.

Distracted driving, whether caused by texting, cell phone use or other activities, is a leading cause of accidents. Our goal is to prevent accidents and keep our parkways safe for all who use them. Drivers need to keep their hands on the wheel and their eyes on the road.

Under Westchester’s law, motorists can be fined up to $150 if convicted of texting while driving. No points are assessed to a violator’s license.