Using Mobile Phones Whilst Driving
For private motorists in the UK, if you are caught using a handheld mobile phone while driving, you will receive 3 points on your licence and a fine of up to £1000. For HGV drivers, PSV and professional drivers this fine can rise to £2,500.
The current 3 points penalty doesn’t seem to the DVLA to be enough of a deterrent as too many drivers persist in using there phones behind the wheel, so plans are in progress to increase the punishment from 3 to 6 points, to act as more of a deterrent.
What Constitutes Mobile Phone Use?
To be guilty of an offence, you must be holding the device & using it for telecommunications purposes. This means that if your phone is receiving or sending data you are guilty of the offence. Telecommunications includes voice calls, texts, emails, social media messaging, in fact anything that involved the transmission or receiving of a signal.
In many instances, where it can’t be confirmed that you were using your phone, you can still be prosecuted for driving without due care and attention just for holding the device.
In this regard, holding the phone is no different than eating or drinking (even a soft drink) behind the wheel while you are in charge of the vehicle.
Anything that distracts your attention and ability to remain focused on the road may lead to an undue care and attention charge.
Mobile phones are a menace to road safety and it’s important for drivers not to be distracted by their smartphones.