A national police campaign to target illegal mobile phone use by drivers is started this week.
The campaign is meant to highlight the risks drivers face – and the risks they pose to others – when they use a mobile phone illegally while at the wheel.
GEM Motoring Assist chief executive Neil Worth is urging drivers to think before they use a phone when behind the wheel.
He said: “Holding and using any device while in control of a car is a potentially lethal distraction that is against the law.
“The physical task of keying in characters on your phone or scrolling through information is very risky while you are also at the wheel of a vehicle.
“It’s also mentally distracting, and if you allow yourself to take part in a conversation or try to read and respond to data on your phone, you’re dramatically reducing your ability to focus on safe driving.
The current penalty for using a mobile phone while driving is a £200 fine with six penalty points, it was introduced in 2017.
GEM Motoring Assist has shared the following advice for drivers:
- Make the sensible decision and keep your phone safely out of reach during every journey. Build in breaks to longer trips so that you can check calls and messages safely
- You’re allowed to use a mobile phone when you are safely parked, with the engine off and the handbrake on
- Please do not pick up your phone in any other driving situation, including when you’re stationary at traffic lights or queueing in traffic
- If it’s an emergency and it would be unsafe or impractical for you to stop, you may call 999
- Hands-free calls do not remove the distraction risk, and you could still be prosecuted for not being in control (an offence that carries a £100 fine and three penalty points)