Tougher mobile phone penalties ‘won’t change driver behaviour’
- Credit: PA
Most motorists do not believe plans to increase penalties for illegal mobile phone use while driving will change people's behaviour, a new study suggests.
The government is set to publish the results of a consultation which proposed raising penalty points for non-lorry drivers from three to four and fines from £100 to £150.
But a survey of 2,100 drivers for the RAC found that 69% do not think the changes would make any difference as a 'substantial minority will still use their hand-held phones while driving'.
Asked generally whether penalties should be increased, 52% agreed.
A fifth (21%) of those people want both penalty points and fines raised, while 11% claim disqualification from driving is the answer.
You may also want to watch:
RAC spokesman Simon Williams said: 'There is a very strong feeling from law-abiding motorists that something needs to be done.
'But while people want the penalties for committing this offence to be beefed up there is also an acceptance that nothing is likely to change due primarily to a lack of enforcement.'
- 1 'Unauthorised' headstones ruin family's final wishes
- 2 Neighbours sick of road turning into 'scene from Fast & Furious'
- 3 Anti-vax protesters descend on Norwich pub demanding entry
- 4 New Lidl supermarket opens in Norwich
- 5 Man was found dead after lockdown hit business, inquest told
- 6 Fresh weather warning with Storm Evert set to hit Norfolk
- 7 Water starts gushing out of sinkhole on Norwich city centre road
- 8 Hospital investigated over 'contentious' deaths goes bust owing £4m
- 9 Post-Latitude covid has made me realise pandemic has a long way to go
- 10 Norwich City transfer rumours: Loan possibility remains for Skipp
Between 2010 and 2014 the number of roads police officers in England and Wales fell by 23%, according to the RAC, while the number of fixed penalty notices issued for illegal mobile use fell from 125,500 in 2009 to 52,400 in 2012.
Mr Williams said using a phone behind the wheel 'is a recipe for disaster' and changing people's behaviour will only be achieved through a combination of measures.
'We need more rigorous enforcement of the law, increased penalties that act as a meaningful deterrent and a high-profile advertising campaign that makes motorists fully aware of the serious consequences of using a hand-held phone at the wheel of a vehicle.'
Transport Minister Andrew Jones said: 'We have some of the safest roads in Europe but we are cracking down on motorists who endanger lives by using hand-held mobile phones while driving.
'We want to see this illegal and dangerous practice become a social taboo.'