More than 200 drivers were caught on their cellphones or not wearing a seatbelt in a Hawke's Bay road policing operation aimed at reducing the road toll this week.

A police spotter dressed in plain clothes helped officers waiting patiently around the bend on Omahu Rd identify drivers flouting the law on Friday morning.

The aim was that by the time the culprit had seen the police presence and put on their seatbelt or put down their phone, it was already too late.

"People just aren't getting the idea, that for something that takes a second to put on, it