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The Saskatchewan RCMP says it's safe to collect points at the McDonald's drive-thru — just be careful

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A Saskatoon man's ticket for using his cell phone while driving has ignited an online debate about whether it's ok to use your phone in the fast-food drive-thru line or on private property.

The RCMP acknowledged it had received “multiple inquiries” about the story of 18-year-old Mason Prima, who came forward to say he got a cell phone ticket while in the McDonald’s drive-thru in Saskatoon. Prima claims the officer fined him for pulling his phone out when he was just 10 feet from the order board, but the RCMP says its traffic enforcement officer initiated a traffic stop after seeing Prima using his cellphone “on a public roadway," and gave him the ticket after he pulled into the restaurant parking lot.

So, is it safe to use your phone to collect points at the drive-thru window?

The RCMP officer in charge of traffic enforcement in Saskatchewan says yes, as long as you're not stunting or driving without due care and attention. 

Superintendent Grant St. Germaine is the head of traffic enforcement for the Saskatchewan RCMP. (Chad Hills / CTV News)

"We don't write cell phone tickets in parking lots," said Supt. Grant St. Germaine.

"There's only a couple of things that we would do. So if you've got a parking lot and somebody's doing donuts in the parking lot, and there's a potential that they're going to kill themselves or somebody else, then we'll get involved. Otherwise, we don't write tickets in parking lots. We don't do enforcement in parking lots."

An RCMP spokesperson also advised CTV News that their traffic services officers — who work alongside local police enforcing traffic laws — aren’t targeting drive-thrus in any organized enforcement.

Mason Prima told CTV News about the moment he was pulled over going through the McDonald’s drive-thru in Saskatoon. (Carla Shynkaruk / CTV News)

Prima still maintains he wasn’t on his phone before getting into the parking lot, and only had it in his hand within steps of the order board.

“I go to that McDonald’s almost every day for lunch. I know that cops sit there all the time.”

He said he plans to fight the ticket in court on July 31.

-With files from Carla Shynkaruk 

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