There has been significant changes to transport laws this year.
Increased penalties for mobile use when driving
As of March 1st 2017, drivers are facing doubled fines for handling mobile phones on the road.
The CU80 driving offence will see motorists fined £200 in addition to receiving six points on their licence. This will have detrimental affects, particularly for newly qualified drivers. Those who have been driving for less than two years will lose their licence altogether.
The penalty increase comes after statistics revealed that 22 people were killed last year in the UK, as a result of drivers using mobile phones.
The transport secretary, Chris Grayling said: ‘Our message is simple and clear: do not get distracted by your mobile phone while driving. It may seem innocent, but holding and using your phone at the wheel risks serious injury and even death.’
‘Doubling penalties will act as a strong deterrent to motorists tempted to pick up their phone while driving and will also mean repeat offenders could find themselves banned from our roads if they are caught twice.’
What is included in the penalty?
What you can do to avoid the fine:
You can still go hands-free
Drivers are required to have completely set up the hands-free before the journey, though. Even momentary handling is illegal.
Smart-phones for directions
You can still use your phone as a sat nav, the device just needs to be attached to a windscreen or dashboard – not in your hand. The mobile law specifically refers to this!
Be wary in traffic – you can still be penalised
When safely parked, it is legal to use your phone in the car. This does not include during traffic. To be sure – avoid using your phone when the car engine is running.
If it isn’t safe to stop, drivers are allowed to use their devices to call services such as 999 during the event of an emergency.
View the full guidelines at RAC.