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20,000 texting while driving tickets issued in New York

July 13, 2012 5:09:00 AM PDT
Authorities in New York report issuing more than 20,000 tickets to motorists in the first year under a tougher law against using handheld electronics while driving.

According to the governor's office, police issued four times as many tickets for so-called texting while driving after it was made a primary traffic offense last July compared to the year before.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who signed the law, says the increase in tickets shows the law's usefulness to "crack down hard on distracted driving."

Data show more than 3,700 tickets issued the past year in Manhattan, followed by Queens with about 3,300 and Brooklyn with 3,200.

Administration officials cite research showing that drivers that use handheld electronic devices while driving are four times more likely to be involved in a crash.

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