Posted on: 07/08/2014
A couple of weeks ago, we wrote a blog about mobile phone driving law. Since then statistics have revealed that fewer drivers are using their mobile phones behind the wheel.
Figures shared by Get Surrey show a gradual decline in fixed penalty notices issued to motorists for phone usage in the county since 2010.
What are the stats?
In Surrey during 2010, 3,842 drivers were pulled over for making a call or sending a message while driving, a number which increased to 3,928 in 2011.
In 2012 the number dropped to 2,832 and last year the number dropped again, to 2,509. Up to June this year, 1,352 fines have been issued.
Research has shown that reaction times for drivers using a handheld device are around 50% slower than when people are driving under normal conditions.
Drivers caught using their mobile phone behind the wheel will receive a £60 fine and could also be given three penalty points on their licence.
Plans to double penalty points for using mobile while driving
Ministers are considering doubling the number of penalty points drivers are given when they are caught driving while speaking on a mobile phone.
Patrick McLoughlin, the transport secretary, is considering the plans to double the penalty points in the current sanction to six. The move was recommended by Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, the commissioner of the Metropolitan police, after the first increase in deaths and injuries from dangerous driving on the capital's streets in more than a decade. It would mean a driving ban for anyone who was caught twice in three years.
According to a national survey carried out by Kwik Fit, 47% of 2,002 drivers questioned said using a mobile phone was the driving habit that most annoyed them. Older motorists were more likely to be annoyed, with 62% of over 65s citing it as their main motoring complaint.
James McLoughlin, spokesman for road safety charity Brake said: “Mobile phone use at the wheel, whether handheld or hands-free, is proven to significantly increase the risk of crashing, endangering a driver’s life and, selfishly, the lives of other road users.
“Those who flout the law and put lives in danger must be left in no doubt how serious the issue is, and traffic policing needs to be a priority for police forces so they can catch illegal risk-takers.
“No phone call is so important that it is worth risking a life to make, and we call on all drivers to switch their phone off and put it out of reach to avoid potentially deadly distractions.”
Source: Get Surrey
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