A special operation during the long weekend resulted in almost 200 charges for lack of seatbelt use, speeding, and cell phone violations being issued by P.E.I. RCMP over the long weekend.

The charges came despite advance notice police would be out in force.

'They simply continued to use their cell phones — heads down, texting behind the wheel.'— Const. Jeff Gillis

"People wonder sometimes at why we send advance notice of our enforcement initiatives," says Staff Sgt. Mark Crowther in a news release.

"There were no surprises. Our officers were in plain view at intersections, at roadside, and despite having marked police vehicles just about everywhere, drivers still came into our checkpoints without seatbelts and some talking on cell phones."

In total, police established 25 check points and handed out 182 charges.

RCMP used plainclothes members as spotters at key intersections to detect cell phone users.

"We walked right up to them," said Const. Jeff Gillis.

"They simply continued to use their cell phones — heads down, texting behind the wheel."

RCMP said they gave advance notice of the operation because the goal is not to charge people, but to education and raise awareness of unsafe driving practices.

Further campaigns are planned for the Labour Day and Thanksgiving long weekends.