From 1 March, new laws came into force targeting feral motorists risking other people’s lives. Motorists will now be given an instant six points as opposed to three points which it used to be, and £200 fine instead of £100.Overseas motorists will have to pay their fine immediately.
New motorists, and those who already have several motoring offences will be hardest hit. In the UK, the number of penalty points a motorist can have is 12, though there are some exceptions.
Despite a vigorous awareness campaign, many motorists in the UK are continuing to drive with a mobile phone to check their social media and text. Already the crackdown has caught many , some of whom have now lost their licence instantly and will need to re-take their tests, which will be time consuming and expensive for them, and a nuisance to their relatives.
Some professional drivers have also been caught which has harmed their career and prospects. The Times said that a news reporter who was going to report on the story about motorists driving with mobile phones, was actually caught by police driving with one. You cannot make this up!
Some of the rules:
- It Is illegal to use a handheld mobile when driving. This includes using your phone to follow a map, read a text or check social media. This applies even if you’re stopped at traffic lights, queuing in traffic or if the engine is running.
- Motorists are allowed to use hands-free phones – but must not press any buttons on their phone to make calls.
- 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 6 penalty points on your licence
- Drivers will get a fine of £200.
- Points on your licence will result in higher insurance costs.
- There is a 6-point limit set in the first two years after passing your test, so the 6 points from a mobile phone offence will mean you will lose your licence.
- New motorists who lose their licence will need to reapply for a provisional licence and retake both theory and practical driving tests.
- Using hands free (e.g. for navigation) is not illegal. However, if this distracts you and affects your ability to drive safely, you can still be prosecuted by the police.
Many people think these laws are still too soft, and I would agree as I think all motorists who drive with a mobile should have an instant ban and ideally their car should be crushed to stop them still driving, but I would say years later, we will be able to gather statistics and can take a look at it again. If there is still no improvement, obviously tougher laws must be taken.
As 1 in 24 of us are sociopaths, the laws will bound tougher in years to come.