Half of Drivers Admit to Using Mobile Whilst at the Wheel

Text and Drive

A poll taken by road safety charity Brake, in association with Direct Line insurance has found that nearly half of drivers questioned admitted to using their mobile phone whilst driving.

Text and DriveOf that 48 percent, two thirds said that they did not use a hands free kit at the time, despite acknowledging the risks involved.

Up to 25 percent stated they used the phone whilst driving at least once a week, whilst 44 percent of younger drivers and over a quarter of older drivers admitted to texting whilst driving.

In total, men were more likely to use their phones whilst driving than women, although there is little in it with 50 percent of men and 47 percent of women owning up.

In addition to making calls and sending texts, more than 20 percent of younger drivers also claimed to use their phones for checking emails, going online or using apps whilst at the wheel.

Currently the penalty for drivers caught using their mobile phone whilst driving is a fine of £60 plus three penalty points on their licence. The government is set to increase the fine amount to between £800 and £100.

“Use a phone while driving and you are taking a horrendous risk with your own life and the life of others,” said Julie Townsend, Deputy Chief Executive of Brake. “Many drivers who wouldn't dream of drink-driving are using phones while driving, oblivious that the effect on reaction times can be similar. We are urging people to drive smart, recognising that phone use at the wheel can and does destroy lives and that no call or text is ever that important. If you need to use your phone urgently, pull over somewhere safe, first. It is that simple.”

“We are also calling on the Government to do more to tackle phone use at the wheel, including banning hands free phone and bringing in far stiffer penalties.” she added.

The risks involved with using a mobile phone whilst driving are well known, so to do so in full knowledge is as selfish as it is stupid. The video below from Tredegar Comprehensive school and Gwent Police, serves as a reminder to what can happen. Beware, graphic content:

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