Cuomo rides along with trooper to catch texting drivers amid crackdown

Cuomo says there are now more accidents caused by distracted drivers than drunken drivers. (7/15/13)

UNIONDALE - An unlikely crew set out on the roads today in an attempt to catch drivers who can't help but text behind the wheel.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo sat in the passenger's seat alongside a state trooper who steered an unmarked patrol car. News 12's Eileen Lehpamer tagged along in the backseat. They set out to seek drivers who put others at risk by tapping away on their phones.

It was all part of the state's summertime crackdown on drivers who text. The state recently increased the penalty from three points on an offender's license to five, plus a fine.

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Cuomo announced today $1 million more in funding for the effort, which will go toward more unmarked police cars and other equipment. "People have to get the message," Cuomo said.

During the ride along with governor, the state trooper pulled over two motorists for allegedly texting while driving. One worked for the U.S. Army, the other was an off-duty NYPD officer.

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