March 21st, 2017
Crashes in the UK that involved a driver being distracted by a mobile phone has risen by 20% over the past 3 years. It has increased by 5% from 2012 to 2013 with the RAC stating that something needs to be done. RAC chief engineer David Bizley said that it needs to become ‘as unacceptable as drink-driving,
‘We are … calling on the police to enforce the current laws on the use of hand-held phones while driving more effectively.
‘This must be supported by a high-profile, government-funded road safety campaign that makes using a hand-held mobile phone at the wheel as socially unacceptable as drink driving.
Mr Bizley said: ‘A report by the Transport Research Laboratory in June this year demonstrated that talking on a hand-held phone while driving causes a 46 per cent reduction in reaction speeds, compared to 13 per cent for drivers drinking to the legal limit. This is extremely compelling and puts into perspective the dangers of using a phone while driving.’
He added: ‘We feel there is currently a high level of acceptability which is something both this government, and the next administration that takes over in May 2015, needs to address as a matter of urgency if we are to prevent the number of accidents continuing to rise.’
Three quarters of motorists say that they regularly see motorists using a mobile phone when driving, but 8% admit to doing it themselves.
You currently get 3 points and a £100 fine for using your phone behind the wheel, but the significant rise from 378 accidents to 422 means that this will have to get stricter.
Last updated: 21 March 2017
You can get 6 penalty points and a £200 fine if you use a hand-held phone.