ALBANY Nearly 1,000 Thruway motorists were ticketed during the fourth phase of “Operation Hang Up,” a stepped up four-day enforcement of the state law prohibiting the use of hand-held cell phones by motorists while driving by the New York State Thruway Authority and the New York State Police Troop T. The initiative began on Sept. 20 and ran through Sept. 23. Over the past year, State Police, Troop “T,” has issued more than 9,000 cell phone citations. “The Authority and Troop T will continue to drive home the simple message that cell phone use can be a distraction and safety risk on the road,” said Thruway Authority Executive Director Michael R. Fleischer. “Our message is simple: if you use a hand-held cell phone or are texting while driving, you should fully expect to receive a ticket from a New York State Trooper,” said Troop T Commander Major Robert C Meyers, “We expect, in fact we insist, that you keep your eyes - and your mind - on the road at all times.” It’s the law New York State law prohibits the use of a hand-held mobile telephone while one is driving except to call 911 or to contact medical, fire or police personnel regarding an emergency. Violators who are ticketed face a maximum fine of $100, along with a mandatory $60 surcharge. Since Nov. 1, 2009, it is also illegal in New York State to text message on a hand-held device while driving a motor vehicle. The law also prohibits surfing the Internet and playing computer games while driving. The maximum fine is $150.