Lynnwood police want new ‘inattentive driving’ ordinance

Police Chief Steve Jensen is asking the City Council to adopt a new ordinance for inattentive drivers.

In a memo to the Council, Jensen says officers are often forced to apply generic violations while investigating accidents — such as “following too closely” or “speed top fast for conditions” — when many times simple inattentiveness is the actual cause.

Other cities such as Seattle, Bellevue and Kirkland have enacted similar regulations.

If enacted as written, it would be an infraction to drive in a way that shows a lack of attentiveness required to safely operate the vehicle under prevailing conditions. It’s unknown what the fine would be.

Jensen says inattentive driving is linked to an average of 700 fatal collisions each year in Washington state.

The City Council is scheduled to discuss the measure tonight and could vote on it.

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