News release

New Road Safety Legislation Comes into Effect

Legislation to support safer driving comes into effect Tuesday, April 1, with a ban on hand-held cellphones and text messaging while driving.

"We know that driver distraction is a leading cause of motor vehicle collisions and this legislation helps ensure people stay focused on driving while they are on the road," said Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal Minister Murray Scott.

Legislation to prohibit hand-held cellphone use and text messaging while driving was passed in the fall session of the legislature. Hand-held cellphone use will only be allowed in emergency situations.

"Doctors Nova Scotia is pleased that the province has taken the step to ban the use of hand-held cellphones while driving," said Dr. Don Pugsley, president of Doctors Nova Scotia. "Doctors see the results of distracted driving in emergency rooms across the province. Staying off the phone while behind the wheel will mean driving safer and will prevent injuries."

Susan Brushett, executive director of Injury Free Nova Scotia, is pleased with the new legislation.

"We are happy that steps are being taken to address the distraction issue, and encourage all drivers to avoid activities that take their mind off driving when they are behind the wheel," said Ms. Brushett.

Nova Scotia is the second province in Canada to ban hand-held cellphone use while driving.

Information on cellphone use and driver distraction can be found on the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal website at www.gov.ns.ca/tran/ .

FOR BROADCAST USE:

Legislation to support safer driving comes into effect Tuesday (April 1st) with a ban on hand-held cellphones and text messaging while driving. Under the new law, hand-held cellphone use will only be allowed in emergency situations.

Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal Minister Murray Scott says driver distraction is a leading cause of collisions and the legislation will help people stay focused on driving while they are on the road.

Doctors Nova Scotia president Don Pugsley, says his organization is pleased that the province the use of hand-held cell phones while driving. He says doctors see the results of distracted driving in emergency rooms across the province and staying off the phone while behind the wheel will prevent injuries.

Information on cellphone use and driver distraction can be found on the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal website at W-W-W dot gov dot N-S dot C-A slash tran .

-30-

Media Contacts:

Cathy MacIsaac
Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal 902-424-8978 E-mail:
Dawna MacIvor
Doctors Nova Scotia 902-468-1866 (ext. 23)
Susan Brushett
Injury Free Nova Scotia 902-240-6527 E-mail: