Brits Face Mobile Phone Crackdown

Tue 9th Feb 2021

Motorists in the UK are being targeted by police forces across the country as part of a campaign to stop drivers using their mobile phone while behind the wheel.

A change to the law in 2021 will make it easier for police forces to prosecute those who are using their phone in any way at all, whereas a legal loophole previously meant that the police had to prove that the phone was being used to make calls, check email or send a text.

Now drivers who simply touch their phone while driving will be liable for prosecution, and those caught will face a £200 fine and a six point penalty on their licence. In addition, those who have only passed their test in the past two years could face losing their licence completely. The law is expected to be passed by the government this year, but ahead of the changes the National Police Chiefs’ Council has launched a campaign of awareness to crack down on those endangering lives by using their phone.

“We are seeing a worrying shift in attitudes to mobile phone use behind the wheel and this is raising many safety concerns,” said Jem Mountford of Warwickshire police, who despite the country being in lockdown for most of 2020 have seen a relative rise in fixed penalty notices for using a hand held mobile while driving.

“We are seeing more drivers looking down to use a handheld mobile phone to use social media apps, select music, check emails or texting while driving when they should be focussing on the road ahead. We are asking these drivers to consider how their actions could affect themselves and other people.

“Whoever you are texting or calling, whether parents, family, or friends, they would not want you to have a collision potentially injuring yourself or someone else.”