Driver in Minnesota cited for reading a book while driving: “Stay alive, don’t novel and drive”

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EAGAN, Minnesota — Ever find yourself in the throes of a really good book that you just cannot put down? Perhaps that was the case for a driver in Eagan, Minnesota — pulled over after he was caught by an officer reading a novel while driving.

It happened on Highway 149 in Eagan.

Dashcam video shows the officer asking the driver what he was looking down at while driving.

The driver responded by saying: “I was reading a James Patterson book.”

In this case, the plot twist came not from James Patterson, but from the officer — who wrote a citation.

“Obviously not the smartest thing to do while driving. Very dangerous. But he kind of got it, knew he made a mistake and the officer went back and ended up giving him a citation,” Officer Aaron Machtemes, spokesperson for Eagan Police told KMSP.

Machtemes said there are a lot of accidents caused by people who are distracted — doing other things while driving, like texting, for example.

“They look down for two seconds and that’s when the person ahead of them hits the brakes and there’s an accident. Just recently I heard of a lady with big curls in her hair. As she was driving, she’s taking her curls out with her knees up on the wheel,” Machtemes said.

Machtemes said distracted driving is only getting worse — mostly because of smartphones.

“Stay alive, don’t novel and drive,” Machtemes said.

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