Tougher Penalties For Drivers Using Mobile Phones
New legislation comes into force today (Wednesday 1 March 2017). From now on, newly qualified drivers will lose their licence if they are caught using a hand held mobile phone under tough new penalties. For all other drivers’ penalty points and fines will double to six points and £200.
Those caught using their mobile twice, or who accrue 12 points on their licence, could face going to court, being disqualified from driving and receiving fines of up to £1,000. Drivers of buses or goods vehicles could get a maximum fine of £2,500.
It is illegal to use a hand-held or similar device whilst driving, or riding a motorcycle. The rules are the same if you are stopped at traffic lights or queuing in traffic. Drivers must be in control of their vehicle at all times. The police can stop a driver if they think they’re not in control of their vehicle due to being distracted. This includes using a satnav or car radio. These same rules apply if you are supervising a learner driver.
Full information about the new rules can be found here: Using Mobile Phones While Driving.
Driving is one of the most dangerous things that people do and yet many of us don’t take it seriously enough. Using a mobile phone, even hands free, means a driver is 4 times as likely to have an accident. Research by the RAC has shown that using a mobile phone whilst driving can be more dangerous than being under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
The government has said that it hopes that these tougher penalties will act as a strong deterrent. The transport secretary, Chris Grayling, said: “Our message is simple and clear: do not get distracted by your mobile phone while driving. It may seem innocent, but holding and using your phone at the wheel risks serious injury and even death to yourself and other road users.” “Everyone has a part to play in encouraging their family and friends not to use their phones while driving – it is as inexcusable as drink driving.”
If you have been injured as a result of another driver’s negligence or reckless behaviour it is always advisable to instruct a solicitor to assist you in bringing a claim for compensation.
At Wolferstans we have a dedicated team of lawyers experienced in dealing with road traffic accident claims. If you would like further information about making a claim please contact Karen Walker on 01752 292265.