Senior hit with Manitoba's first seven-day ban for distracted driving

A man in his 60s has been issued the first seven-day driver’s licence suspension for using a smartphone while driving.

According to Manitoba Public Insurance (MPI), the man’s first offence happened in late November – a few weeks after the province’s new distracted driving laws came into place. That ticket came with an automatic three-day driving suspension.

The man committed a second distracted driving offence in January in Portage la Prairie, which earned him the week-long suspension.

The seven-day suspension is handed out as a penalty for a second offence within 10 years of a first collar for distracted driving.

Despite harsher penalties, distracted driving persists in Manitoba

In addition to the suspension, the new laws include other harsh penalties, such as a $672 fine for getting busted using an electronic device on the road, as well as five demerits.

For some drivers – like the seven-day man – however, the harsher penalties haven’t seemed to change dangerous behaviour.

MPI said Thursday that nearly 300 drivers have been suspended since the Nov. 1 law was introduced.

WATCH: Texting and driving, Manitoba? Prepare to pay $672 and lose your licence for three days

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