No chopsticks at the wheel

A Kelowna woman has been convicted of driving without due care and attention, after being observed eating with chopsticks while driving.

On Nov. 7, 2018, the woman was driving westbound on Highway 33.

RCMP were conducting a distracted driving check for cellphone use when Corinne Jackson was spotted.

Police say she had a bowl in her left hand, chopsticks in her right hand, and was actively eating.

The woman testified she still had control of the vehicle with three fingers of her left hand on the wheel. Justice Brian Burgess rejected her claim that she had full control of the vehicle.

However, he didn't set a precedent that eating equals distracted driving.

"By coming to the conclusion that (she) was driving without due care and attention as she was driving with a bowl in her left hand and chopsticks in her right hand and actively eating, I am not finding that a person who is eating while driving is driving without due care and attention. The minimum standard of a reasonable and prudent person, as implied by the Crown, would be to have at least one full hand on the steering wheel while the vehicle being driven is in motion. The hand that is on the steering wheel should not also be holding some other object," stated Burgess.

Driving without due care and attention carries a maximum fine of $2,000 but most are for $368 and six demerit points.

Burgess gave her until the end of October to pay the fine.

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