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Harsher penalties introduced for using your mobile phone whilst driving


As of the 1st March 2017 penalties for using a mobile phone whilst driving have significantly increased.

It is illegal to use a hand-held phone or similar device while driving, or riding a motorcycle.

When you can use a phone in your vehicle

If you’re the driver, you can only use your phone in a vehicle if:

  • You need to call 999 in an emergency and it’s unsafe or impractical to stop
  • You are safely parked

You can NOT use your mobile phone if you are stopped at traffic lights or queuing in traffic and can be stopped by Police if you are deemed not to be in proper control of your vehicle.

Penalties for using your phone while driving

You could get 6 penalty points on your licence and a fine of £200. In some cases you may have go to court and you could be disqualified from driving and get a maximum fine of £1,000.

As a new driver, if you receive six penalty points within the first two years of driving then you will lose your licence. With the new penalties in place, one text sent whilst driving could lead to the loss of your licence. More experienced motorists can lose their licence if they receive 12 points within a three-year period.

The new penalties have been bought in to reflect the rise in accidents caused by people who were on their mobile phones and not properly in control of their vehicles. In 2015 twenty-two people were killed and 99 seriously injured in accidents on UK roads where a motorist using a mobile phone was a factor.

If you require any advice or assistance with any motoring offence do not hesitate to contact our road traffic specialists. Jeremy Scott on 07971 520407 and Meghan Waldron on 07469 859708 will be happy to give you free initial advice without any obligation.

Please note this information is provided by way of example and may not be complete and is certainly not intended to constitute legal advice. You should take bespoke advice for your circumstances.


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