BROOKLYN - April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month, and transportation officials say the issue is a big problem in Brooklyn.
According to the National Highway Safety Administration, distracted driving accounts for 10 percent of all fatal crashes and 17 percent of all accidents that cause injuries.
Because of those statistics, police have cracked down on the practice. The effort has led to a 1 percent increase in tickets for distracted driving over the past year in Brooklyn.
In Brooklyn alone, over 83,000 distracted driving tickets were handed out in the last two years, according to the state Department of Transportation. The department also says Brooklyn drivers accounted for 30 percent of all distracted driving tickets in New York City in 2015.
"I would recommend for everyone to complete a defensive driving course," says Elias Soltero, a driving instructor at Always Better Choice.
Distracted driving can include looking at smartphones, driving while eating or anything that will distract drivers from paying attention to the road, according to officials.