It's Time For Drivers 'To Take Phone Rules Seriously'

GEM Motoring Assist Has Urged Drivers To Stop Using Their Mobile Phones

05.12.2013

Drivers have been urged not to use their mobile phones while behind the wheel.

GEM Motoring Assist - a road safety and breakdown recovery organisation - said drivers need to take the UK's motoring laws more seriously.
 
Ten years have now passed since the government officially banned the use of mobile handsets by motorists, but many vehicle owners are still flouting these regulations on a regular basis.
 
According to figures provided by the Department for Transport, drivers are four times more likely to crash if they use a phone, as their reaction times are cut by 50 per cent.

GEM has put together a video that explains the dangers of mobile phone usage, as well as the potential fines and penalties involved.

The government has introduced tougher punishments this year, with drivers now facing the prospect of three points on their licence and a £100 fine if they are caught out.

If the matter is taken to court, the maximum penalty for this offence has been upped to £2,500. In cases where it is proven that mobile phone use was the main cause of an accident, the perpetrator could be charged with careless or dangerous driving.

David Williams, chief executive officer at GEM Motoring Assist, said the volunteers who took part in the 'Kill the conversation' footage were surprised at how dangerous it can be to make a call or send a text while driving.

"With so many accidents caused by careless drivers using their phone at the wheel, it's time for this legislation to be taken seriously," he commented.

"We are advising all motorists to turn their phone off when at the wheel to avoid any distraction. Surely no call is as important as the safety of yourself and others while on the road."

GEM has also backed Brake's 'Put it in the boot' campaign, which advises motorists to leave their phone in the back of their vehicle so that it does not distract them.

The road safety charity revealed last month that as many as 575,000 Britons have points on their licence for either using a phone or losing their concentration in some other way.

“It is imperative that drivers obey the UK motoring law on using mobile phones at the wheel. We have seen many statistics including the latest mentioned from the GEM showcasing how many people are either within accidents or cause accidents due to using a mobile phone when driving."

Expert Opinion
Drivers need to be vigilant to improve road safety to reduce the amount of accidents related to the use of a mobile phone.

“The fact that over half a million people in Great Britain have points on their licence through using mobile phones or being distracted in other ways is quite a shocking statistic and one we need to get to grips with”
Neil Whiteley, Partner