The Milford Police Department issued 98 violations during a recent high visibility enforcement campaign.

State and local law enforcement partnered with the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration from Aug. 1 to 15 for the national U Drive. U Text. U Pay. high-visibility enforcement effort. The goal of the campaign was to step up enforcement efforts to catch distracted drivers and enforce distracted-driving laws.

“Too many drivers are ignoring their responsibilities behind the wheel,” said Joseph Giulietti, commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Transportation, as the effort was getting underway.

During the first wave of the campaign in April 2019, more than 10,000 citations were issued across the state to motorists who “chose to ignore Connecticut’s distracted driving laws,” added Giulietti.

Over the past decade, distracted driving has become one of the leading causes of vehicle crashes on the nation’s roads. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, between 2012-2017, nearly 20,000 people died in crashes involving a distracted driver.

Since 2015, nearly 33,000 crashes in Connecticut have involved a distraction — resulting in 45 fatal crashes, the agency said.

Fines in Connecticut for violations begin at $150 for a first offense, increase to $300 for a second offense, and are $500 for subsequent violations.