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Tougher punishments expected as drivers fail to take notice of mobile phone laws

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Fines imposed on drivers who use mobile phones at the wheel are set to double, it has been revealed.

Under plans being drafted by civil servants, those who break the law can expect to receive a £200 on-the-spot penalty.

The fine was previously increased from £60 to £100 two years ago, but officials are concerned that this failed to have an effect on the number of offences.

Figures from a few months ago found that half a million drivers a day could be making calls and texting while driving.

A Government source said: “The penalty was raised from £60 to £100 but it has turned out that is not enough. It has not proved a deterrent.”

 

The number of people prosecuted for driving while using a mobile soared from 736 in 2005 to 8116 in 2009 and several high-profile awareness campaigns have failed to curb the problem.

 

The rising number of offences is particularly worrying because it comes at a time when road policing budgets are being cut. The number of officers has been reduced by almost a quarter over the course of the past five years.

A Department for Transport spokesman said: “It’s illegal and dangerous for someone to use their phone for any reason while driving.

“To deter drivers from irresponsible behaviour we introduced tougher penalties in 2013 and keep further measures under consideration.”

For those drivers who are facing accusations of using a mobile phone while driving or allowing its use by someone else, then the specialist Road Traffic team at Lester Morrill can advise you on your options and provide expert representation. For more details on how we can assist you, contact us today.

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