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CUT OFF TIME FOR HAND-HELD CALLS

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It is now an offence to use a hand-held mobile phone when driving. ...
It is now an offence to use a hand-held mobile phone when driving.

Commenting as the new ban came into force, David Jamieson, road

safety minister said:

'It is now illegal to use a hand-held mobile phone whilst driving.

The vast majority of motorists know that driving and using a mobile

phone is dangerous and I hope that today's ban will make the roads

safer for everyone.

'You are four times more likely to be involved in an accident when

using a mobile phone and driving - and this new offence will help

make our roads safer.

'For their own safety and that of other road users, I hope motorists

will stop using their phones when driving. We don't want to catch

people - we want them to drive safely.

'Today's new offence applies to hand-held mobiles - but using any

type of phone while driving increases the risk of having an accident.

Remember the police can use other powers to prosecute a driver if

they are distracted by a call on a hands-free phone.'

Notes

1. The new offence takes effect from today [1 December 2003].

Initially offenders will be subject to a £30 fine, which can be

increased to a maximum fine of £1,000 if the matter goes to court. The

Government does plan to increase the penalty for the new offence by

making it subject to three penalty points and a £60 fixed penalty.

Primary legislation will be needed for this when a suitable

opportunity arises to amend Schedule 2 of the Road Traffic Offenders

Act 1988. We do not have a timetable for that yet.

2. A list of frequently asked questions about mobile phones and

driving is available from the Department for Transport's website.

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