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Driving: Mobile Phones

Volume 696: debated on Thursday 15 November 2007

asked Her Majesty’s Government:

Whether further action is necessary to tackle the continuing use of hand-held telephones by individuals driving motor vehicles; and, if so, what action is proposed. [HL105]

There has been a significant increase in the number of drivers caught by the police committing this offence. The latest figures, for 2005, show that the police took enforcement action against 129,700 drivers for the specific offence of driving while using a hand-held mobile phone. This is a 72 per cent (75,200) increase on the 2004 figure.

The message that the Government and the police want to get over is that using a mobile phone while driving is dangerous and where drivers continue to flout the law and are seen by the police they will be prosecuted.

The offence became endorsable (three points) and the penalty was increased to £60 with effect from 27 February 2007. The Department for Transport also ran through the summer months a significant publicity campaign under its THINK! Road Safety umbrella to raise drivers’ awareness of the consequences of the offence.