Almost one thousand motorists were caught using their mobile phones whilst at the wheel in a police operation last month.
In total, officers detected 972 offences of driving and using a mobile phone. Dyfed police issued the most fixed penalty notices, with 454, followed by South Wales Police, North Wales Police and Gwent Force.
The worst offenders were Males over 26 years old, going against the perceived image of young users being more attached to their phones.
415 of the offenders fell into that group, with 209 offenders being Male aged 25 and under. Female drivers also scored higher in the older age category, with 171 offenders aged 26 and over, and 120 aged 25 and under.
There are regular campaigns in print media, online and on TV, warning against the dangers of using a mobile phone whilst driving, but it seems that message isn't getting through. Susan Storch, Chair of Road Safety Wales, said: “While it is saddening to see that so many motorists got caught using a mobile phone whilst driving it has also demonstrated the resolve of all the Road Safety Wales partners in tackling this issue and we will continue to work together to drive home the message that you need to switch off before you drive off.”
Councillor Richard Clark, Executive Member for Corporate Governance and Community Safety at Torfaen County Borough Council, added: “Once a driver uses their phone, they are not focussing on the road and this lack of concentration can, even for a split second, be devastating. I hope campaigns such as this make more drivers, passengers and the Torfaen community more aware of the risks and consequences of using a mobile phone while driving and as a society we see it in the same light as drink driving, speeding and not wearing seatbelts. The dangers are simply too high to ignore.”
The message is clear. Don't gamble with a life, don't use a mobile whilst driving.