Hilliard Police Pass Maria’s Message Directly To Drivers

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Officers in Hilliard are carrying more than a gun and badge with them, they also have special fliers.

Police are passing out the Maria’s Message fliers during each traffic stop in September. 

The goal is to end distracted driving.

LEARN MORE AND TAKE THE PLEDGE: Maria's Message

Officer Mike Metz says every day he sees distracted drivers on Central Ohio roads.

“It amazes me how many people are on the phone, doing something in the car, not paying attention,” said Metz.

When Metz stops drivers this September, he will be giving out more than tickets and warnings. He's also giving out information on Maria's Message and the dangers of distracted driving. 

“I've seen fatalities, serious injuries, damage because of distracted driving. These kind of situations can happen when people are not paying attention while they are driving,” added Metz.

Hilliard officers have issued eight citations so far this year for driver inattention. While the numbers are low, Metz says the inattention often leads to other things – for example, speeding.

While 10TV followed Metz, he pulled over a driver who was speeding in a school zone. The driver admitted to being distracted by trying to look down and read her GPS.

Officer Metz pulls over a distracted driver

“I wasn't even thinking about it, and actually I went through the zone and didn't even see the lights,” said Laura Payne.

Metz says he is working to stop distracted driving - one traffic stop at a time. 

It’s such a concern, officials in Hilliard are looking to establish a traffic enforcement unit that would be responsible solely investigating crashes and issuing citations.