National police crackdown on motorists using their phones while driving

Robert Shepley - EditorBanbury News, Police & Emergency

Banbury News

National police crackdown on motorists using their phones while driving

A moment’s inattention could mean the difference between life and death.

This is the stark warning from officers across Thames Valley and Hampshire who this week join a nationwide crackdown on people using mobile phones behind the wheel.

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All too often officers are confronted with the devastating consequences of people using their phone while driving and this week of action, led by the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC), aims to reduce unnecessary deaths on our roads.

Roads Policing Officers from the Joint Operations Unit will be carrying out dedicated activity, stopping drivers caught using their phones, issuing penalties, as well as educating motorists about the dangers of distraction.

As revealed last week following the results from Operation Tramline, too many people are still taking the risk while driving.

During that five-day operation earlier this month, which aimed at stopping distracted drivers, 137 were caught using their phones when behind the wheel.
Road Safety Sgt Chris Appleby said: “Driving while using a mobile phone is illegal and can have devastating consequences.
“You are four times more likely to be involved in a collision while using a mobile phone or being distracted in a vehicle and your reactions are 50 per cent slower.

“My advice is to turn your phone off whilst driving, put it out of reach, and out of view. This way you won’t be tempted to look at it and become distracted – #ItsNotWorthTheRisk.”

The Facts:

• You’re four times more likely to crash if you use a mobile phone while driving.
• Reaction times for drivers using a phone are around 50 per cent slower than normal driving.
• Even careful drivers can be distracted by a call or text – and a split-second lapse in concentration could result in a crash.

The law:

• It’s illegal to ride a motorcycle or drive using hand-held phones or similar devices.
• The rules are the same if you’re stopped at traffic lights or queuing in traffic.
• It’s also illegal to use a hand-held phone or similar device when supervising a learner driver or rider.

When you can use a phone in your vehicle:

If you’re the driver, you can only use your phone in a vehicle if you need to call 999 or 112 in an emergency and it’s unsafe or impractical to stop or safely parked.

Using hands-free devices when driving:

You can use hands-free phones, sat navs and two-way radios when you’re driving or riding. But if the police think you’re distracted and not in control of your vehicle you could still get stopped