Using a mobile phone whilst driving has contributed to a 24% increase in the number of casualties caused by driver distraction since 2011 according to The AA Charitable Trust, and research by the Transport Research Laboratory have said that reaction times are twice as long as when Drink-Driving.
As a result, from March 1st 2017, increased penalties for using a mobile when driving come into effect:
- The fixed penalty for using a handheld mobile when driving has increased from £100 to £200.
- Penalty Points have increased from 3 to 6
This means that new drivers would lose their license if caught texting and are within 2 years of passing their test.
Transport Secretary Chris Grayling, said: "We are toughening the penalties for reckless drivers who use their handheld mobile phones while driving. Using a phone at the wheel is simply unacceptable and can be as dangerous as drink driving."
In collaboration with the Department for Transport’s Think! Campaign, the AA Charitable Trust has put together a new advert highlighting the dangers: