Last month, the Marblehead Police Department deployed electronic signs alerting drivers that April was Distracted Driving Awareness Month. What the MPD did not do was enforce the laws enacted to deter distracted driving.
Only two citations were issued for violations of the state’s “hands free” law, according to the police log, with two more stops ending in “verbal warnings.” What’s more, of the 73 citations issued during the month, 40 were issued over the course of just three days, 21 of those on a single day. Eleven days show no citations issued at all.
These data are available to anyone, although they are laborious to extract and are not always complete. (I’d welcome someone to check my figures.) What they say about how traffic law enforcement actually works in small towns — and in Marblehead in particular — is a subject worth exploring.