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Since 2011, the number of tickets issued by law enforcement in New York for texting while driving has gone up by a staggering amount. According to the Governor's Office, there has been an 840 percent increase over the last five years.

Even as tickets for talking on cell phones have decreased, thanks to the increasing prevalence of smartphones texting tickets continue to rise. In 2011, police handed out 9,015 tickets for texting while driving across the state of New York. In 2012, that number jumped to 30,307 and by 2015 it grew to 84,720. While distracted driving can be caused by any number of diversions, texting while driving is considered a particularly dangerous activity. In order to send a message, the driver must take his or her eyes off the road for an average of five seconds.

While the spike in tickets shows that enforcement has greatly increased, there are some who think further measures need to be implemented. A bill has been proposed that would allow police to plug a device into a driver's phone, which would scan a log to see if the driver had been texting or talking while driving, according to CNNMoney. The device is sometimes referreed to as a "textalyzer" in reference to the breathalyzer police use to catch drunk drivers and would examine the phone's metadata to determine if a conversation took place. The contents of the conversation would not be made available.

Opponents to the legislation have argued that such technology is unnecessary and may not even be constitutional. Currently, cell phone carriers already store logs of a user's activities which police can access by filing a subpoena. In addition, breathalyzers are intended to catch someone driving while they are in a drunken state, some argue. Once the person is no longer drunk, the evidence goes away so it is important to capture it when the violation occurs. Since a person's cell phone data continues to exist after a traffic stop or accident takes place, requiring citizens to hand over their phone to a police officer seems unnecessary, they contend.

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