Back on March 1st, driving fines for using a mobile phone while driving hiked as the government cracked down on careless driving with drivers facing even tougher penalties than before. And first-time offenders will not be able to take a remedial training course, similar to how speeding offences are currently working for first-time speeders.
Previously, the fine was £100 and three points on your license for being caught using a mobile phone while driving, and fines have been as low as £30 in 2003 when they were first introduced. Fines were then doubled in 2007 and the extra penalty of three driving points was also introduced. However, despite the increase in fines over the years, the Department for Transport (DfT) has not reported a significant reduction in mobile phone use over the years.
The DfT have advised drivers that using a mobile phone while driving has a significant impact on driving ability, more so than being over the drink driving limit. The new fines have been introduced after a consultation last year and the number of rising deaths due to mobile phone use while driving.
It was reported that throughout 2014 mobile phone use while driving contributed to 21 fatal accidents and 81 serious ones. However, it’s understood these are underestimates and only contributed to 1% and 0.5% of all crashes.
Current Laws of Mobile Use At The Wheel
– It is illegal to use a mobile phone or any similar hand-held device while driving a vehicle, even if you are stopped at a light or are in a queue.
– The police have the right to stop you if they feel you are distracted, even if you are using a hands-free device such as a sat nav.
– These rules apply to learner drivers and anyone supervising a learner driver.
– Drivers can only use a mobile phone to make an emergency call if it is “unsafe or impractical” to stop, or if they are parked safely.
We at Longbridge Tyres believe nothing is more important than the safety of you and others around you, so we highly advise not using a mobile phone while driving. For more information or if you require a service on your tyres then get in touch with us by calling 0121 457 7582 or filling out our contact form.