Half of British motorists admit to using mobile phone in traffic

HALF of motorists admit to using their mobile phone behind the wheel while stuck in traffic, despite facing six points on their licence and GBP200 fine. Politicians want restrictions to be toughened up and have called for more to be done to stop motorists from using their phones. Figures published by Money Barn show that Wiltshire is among the areas of the country with the fewest fines issued for using a mobile behind the wheel, alongside Avon and Somerset, Nottinghamshire and South Yorkshire.

The most fines were dealt in London and Cheshire. However people in Wiltshire are the most likely to pay the ticket with nearly three quarters of drivers paying costs. Across the county, fixed penalty notices are only paid by 40 per cent of drivers, with just seven per cent of fines paid in Humberside in full.

A mobile phone ban came in two years ago after the number of accidents caused by drivers using their phone increased by 50 per cent from 2013 to 2017. But now MPs have discussed banning hands free devices and helping police forces toughen up on the “entirely avoidable” tragedy of deaths and serious injuries from crashes caused by mobile phone use. Commenting, Joshua Harris from road safety charity Brake, said: “Using a phone whilst driving can impair you as much as driving drunk but stronger laws and tougher enforcement are needed to make it as culturally unacceptable as drink driving.

“All phone use behind the wheel is dangerous, and we need the law to reflect this by banning the use of hands-free devices. “We echo MPs’ call for the Government to work with the police to boost enforcement and ensure there is a true deterrent to the menace of mobile phone use behind the wheel. “When behind the wheel, one moment’s inattention can result in catastrophic and lifelong consequences and no phone call can ever be worth that risk.”

Three HGV supercabs have been patrolling motorways and A roads over the past 12 months.

As part of Operation Tramline, officers recorded 68 drivers using their phone in Wiltshire.

Richard Leonard, head of road safety at Highways England, said: “We introduced the three new HGV supercabs last year to tackle dangerous driving by people who have either got into bad habits or are simply ignoring the law.

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