The Government is preparing to implement plans for greater punishments for drivers caught using mobile phones and devices whilst driving amidst concerns that more and more people are doing so.
Not only is the fine set to rise from £100 to £150, but those caught driving using their phones will also be subject to 4 points on their licence instead of the current 3, as proposed by plans that originate from the Department for Transport.
The plans outlined would come down even harder on HGV drivers who were caught using a device while driving as the points jump would go from 3 to 6, with those at the wheel or larger vehicles being seen as more of a potential danger to other drivers on the road.
DVLA records show that there are nearly 400 drivers in the UK that have racked up 3 consecutive mobile phone related incidents, which under new rules would be enough to lose their licence.
Suzette Davenport, the Association of Chief Police Officers’ lead officer on road policing, said: “If you get caught twice on a mobile phone during a set period of time you should receive a short-term ban.
“If you cannot conduct your professional life or business, that is really going to impact on people and I hope it would be a deterrent.”
The proposal states: “The primary objective is to encourage first time offenders to opt for remedial training courses where they are offered as an alternative. The secondary objective is to act as a deterrent to offending and raise the ‘fear of getting caught’.
“The aim of this policy is not to overly punish first time offenders who genuinely make a mistake, but to come down hard on those who repeatedly offend and show no care for other road users.
Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin said: “We are delivering common-sense proposals that balance tougher penalties for dangerous drivers with practical steps to help youngsters and other more vulnerable groups stay safe on our roads.”