Nova Scotia is getting tougher on people who use cellphones while driving.
Beginning Feb. 1, fines for using hand-held devices while driving, including use of a cellphone for texting, will increase and demerit points will be added, the province said in a news release Wednesday.
Transportation Minister Geoff MacLellan said in the release there’s no phone call or text that is worth a life. He’s asking all Nova Scotian drivers to pay attention to the road.
Fines now range from $176.45 for a first offence to $348.95 for a third or subsequent offence. As of Feb. 1, the fines will increase to $233.95 for a first offence and to $578.95 for a third or subsequent offence.
Four demerit points will be added upon conviction, which would mean a six-month suspension for someone with a learner’s licence. Experienced drivers with a clean record would receive a six-month suspension for 10 points, the release said.
There are exemptions for using a cellphone to report an emergency.