Motorists taking photos and video whilst driving say RAC 0

A recent survey conducted by the RAC has revealed that the number of motorists using mobile phones illegally whilst driving has risen.

It shows that 31% of drivers now say they have used a handheld mobile whilst driving compared with 8% back in 2014.

The amount of driver who said they had either sent a message or posted on social media using a mobile whilst driving more than doubled from 7% to 19%, while 14% said they had either taken a photograph or video whilst behind the wheel.

motorists-taking-photos-and-video-whilst-driving-say-rac

The RAC’s annual Report on Motoring in total surveyed 1,714 drivers. Their findings led the breakdown organisation to say that the use of handheld mobiles while driving was “the biggest road safety concern among motorists today”.

The company believes the reason for the rise in illegal phone use is mostly due to a 27% drop in full time dedicated road policing officers between 2010 and 2015. This has led to motorists believing that they will simply not get caught for offenses not detected by automatic cameras. It is against the law to use a handheld mobile phone whilst driving a car or motorbike. If caught, drivers can receive an automatic fixed penalty, three penalty points and a £100 fine. It’s also possible that the case could be taken to court where the maximum fine is £1,000 and license disqualification.

Figures released by the Department of Transport show that in 2014, 492 road accidents in Britain were caused by a driver being distracted by their phone. 21 of these were fatal, 84 were classed as serious.

The RAC survey also found:

  • 7% of those who admitted using a mobile while driving said they did it because they knew they would get away with it.
  • 23% claimed it was an emergency, 21% said they needed information for their journey and 12% said it was a habit.

A paper is set to be published by the government, which shows the results of a consultation which recommended tougher punishments for illegal mobile use by drivers.

It is expected that the minimum fine for non-HGV drivers will be raised from £100 to £150. It is expected that penalty points will be increased from three to four.

photo credit: BBC