Advice - mobile phones

DFT-Mobile_footyUsing a mobile phone, sat nav or any similar device whilst driving means that the driver’s attention is distracted from the road.

Studies show that drivers using a hands-free or handheld mobile phone are slower at recognising and reacting to hazards. Even careful drivers can be distracted by a call or text – and a split-second lapse in concentration could result in a crash.

The law
It’s illegal to use a handheld mobile when driving. This includes using your mobile phone to follow a map, read a text or check social media. This applies even if you’re stopped at traffic lights or queuing in traffic. You can only use a handheld phone if you are safely parked or need to call 999 or 112 in an emergency and it’s unsafe or impractical to stop.

If you’re caught using a handheld phone while driving, you’ll get three penalty points on your licence and a fine of £100. Points on your licence will result in higher insurance costs.

You may use a hands-free phone while driving but you can still be prosecuted if you’re not in proper control of your vehicle. The penalties are same as being caught using a handheld phone.

The penalties for driving carelessly or dangerously when using a handheld or hands-free phone can include disqualification, a large fine and up to two years imprisonment.

For more information about mobile phones and driving visit the THINK! road safety website: think.direct.gov.uk