New driving law removes chances to ‘interpret’ rules as motorists face fines and points

New driving law removes chances to ‘interpret’ rules as motorists face fines and points

03/06/2022

UK mobile phone driving laws explained by the RAC

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From March 25, drivers will be banned from using a hand-held mobile phone while driving under virtually any circumstances. Drivers are being warned of a potential loophole, with new rules clarifying that using a phone whilst stationary in traffic or at traffic lights still counts as “driving”, according to experts at GEM Motoring Assist.

After the law is introduced, police will be able to more easily prosecute drivers using a hand-held mobile phone at the wheel.

It is already illegal to text or make a phone call (other than in an emergency) using a hand-held device while driving.

This month, laws will go further to ban drivers from using their phones to take photos or videos, scroll through playlists or play games.

Under the new regulations HGV drivers will face a maximum fine of £2,500 for a mobile phone offence.

Specific mobile phone driving laws were introduced in December 2003 which saw motorists handed a £60 fine for an offence before rising to £100 in 2013.

Fines increased to £200 and penalty points endorsements doubled in 2017, to act as a further deterrent.

Soon after the increase, more than 26,000 drivers were issued with six points on their licence and 500 new drivers lost their licence completely.

A spokesperson for GEM Motoring Assist warned drivers of the incoming driving law changes later this month.

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They said: “We know that using a mobile phone whilst driving is an extremely dangerous action which puts not only the offenders at risk, but anyone who happens to be in or near their vehicle.

“The updated law removes any opportunity to interpret what’s allowed and what’s not.

“If you’re holding a phone while driving – and that includes when you’re stopped at lights or in a queue – you can be prosecuted.

“That’s why we want to be sure every driver gets the message: any activity involving a mobile phone at the wheel is a potentially fatal distraction. 

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