Motorists face stiffer fines for phone use

Drivers flouting the laws on using mobile phones whilst driving face stiffer penalties from March 1.
Drivers flouting the laws on using mobile phones whilst driving face stiffer penalties from March 1.
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Lancashire Police are supporting a national campaign to raise awareness of the dangers of using a mobile phone behind the wheel and the tough new penalties for those who flout the law.

From next week, Wednesday March 1, new legislation comes into effect that means motorists who are caught using a mobile whilst driving will receive six points on their licence and a £200 fine, doubling the previous punishment.

In support of the tougher national stance, the constabulary will no longer offer education courses to drivers caught using their phone as an alternative to a fine and points.

Those caught will automatically be issued with a penalty notice or be reported to court, depending on the circumstances of the offence.

For new drivers (within two years of passing their test) this could mean automatically losing their licence and having to re-apply for a provisional and re-take their driving test.

It is hoped that the tougher penalties will act as a deterrent and encourage people to think before they pick up a phone whilst driving.

Chief Inspector Damian Kitchen said: “Our message is ‘it simply is not worth taking that call or sending that text’. Killing or seriously injuring someone just because you picked up your mobile phone will live with you forever, and destroy families. “