Have you been affected by a driver using their mobile phone?

Danny Warby has been found guilty of causing death by dangerous driving. Picture: Terry Harris

Danny Warby has been found guilty of causing death by dangerous driving. Picture: Terry Harris - Credit: Terry Harris Photography

We'd like to hear from you if you've been affected by someone driving while using their mobile phone.

The Government is looking to double the punishment for illegal mobile phone use. It means motorists caught using a handheld phone could be given six points and a £200 fine, up from three points currently.

The tougher sanctions would mean young drivers lose their licence the first time they are caught using a handheld phone.

According to the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (ROPSA), drivers using their mobile phone are four times more likely to crash, injuring or killing themselves and other people.

And RAC research published earlier last week suggested that illegal mobile phone use is on the rise.

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Almost one-third (31pc) of motorists admitted to using a handheld phone behind the wheel compared to just 8pc in 2014 the survey of 1,714 UK motorists found.

The proportion of drivers who confessed to sending a message or posting on social media rose from 7pc to 19pc over the same period.

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Some 14pc of motorists even owned up to taking photographs or videos with their phone while driving.

You can let us know in our anonymous poll above if you have every used your mobile phone while driving.

The RAC believes a 27pc fall in the number of full-time dedicated roads policing officers in England and Wales (excluding London) between 2010 and 2015 has left drivers with no fear that they will be caught for offences which are not detected by automatic cameras.

Earlier this week a west Norfolk lorry driver who was looking at his mobile phone moments before a collision that killed a police officer was jailed for six years.

Danny Warby, 28, was found guilty of causing death by dangerous driving in connection with the death of Sharon Garrett.

The court heard Warby, of School Road, Runcton Holme, near King's Lynn, had only been driving for two minutes prior to the collision but had been using his mobile phone and responded to a text message.

This is not the first time using a mobile phone has played a part in the tragic loss of life on the region's roads.

Officers who investigated a crash in which a drink-driver killed a Norfolk woman found he was probably using his mobile phone at the time of the fatal collision.

Matthew Ritchie, of North Walsham, was jailed for four years two years ago after he admitted causing the death of Dawn Bartlett, 61, by dangerous driving.

Blood tests showed Ritchie was over the drink-drive limit at the time of the crash, which happened on the A146 at Hales in April 2013.

But an examination of Ritchie's phone concluded that he was most likely using Blackberry Messenger at the time of the crash.

•Has this issue affected you? You can email tom.bristow@archant.co.uk, call 01603772834 or leave your comments below.

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