We couldn’t believe it when we heard the Transport Research Laboratory’s (TRL’s) revelation this week: that more drivers are risking accidents by using hand-held mobile phones behind the wheel than before tougher penalties were introduced two years ago.
When the stricter punishments were brought in (£60 fine and three license points) to curb hand-held phone use while driving, the message to drivers, loud and clear, was: it’s going to cost you more, don’t do it. What some drivers translated that into was: we should do it more.
The TRL research found 2.6 per cent of drivers used hand-held phones in 2006, compared to 2.8 per cent of offenders now. Seriously – you do wonder at the mentality behind that statistic…
The ongoing ‘debate’ over mobile phone use behind the wheel shouldn’t be a debate at all, but drivers and fuel card users who simply cannot get their heads around a law which has been defined, time and time again, are still risking their lives and the lives of others for the sake of a phone call.
Studies have shown that motorists are four times more likely to crash when using a hand-held phone, because concentration is so badly impaired, whether you realise it or not.
So motorists – get your head wrapped around the law before you wrap your vehicle around a tree. That call really can wait.
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