NOTE: This content is old - Published: Wednesday, Oct 28th, 2015.
North Wales Police caught and dealt with 59 road users in the space of two weeks who were driving whilst using their mobile phones.
All Wales Enforcement Campaign
- North Wales Police caught 59 drivers
- Gwent Police caught 67 drivers
- Dyfed Powys Police caught 388 drivers
- South Wales Police 57 drivers
- Total of 571 motorists caught using their mobile phones whilst behind the wheel.
“Keep their eyes on the road”
The enforcement campaign, which ran between September 24 and October 7, involving road safety partners urged all road users to ‘keep their eyes on the road’ and not be distracted by answering their mobile phone, reading a text or going online.
The operation led by Dyfed Powys Police, involved officers from all four Welsh police forces along with GoSafe carrying out ‘proactive patrols’ to target motorists using mobile devices while driving.
Studies show that drivers using a hands-free or handheld mobile phone are slower at recognising and reacting to hazards.
T/Chief Inspector Martin Best from North Wales Police’ Roads Policing Unit said:
“Although fewer motorists were caught in this year’s campaign throughout Wales, it remains a serious concern that so many drivers choose to risk becoming involved in a serious or fatal collision due to using a mobile phone whilst driving. Our warning is clear, even the most experienced or competent of drivers can be easily distracted and a slight lapse in concentration can have devastating consequences.
“Taking such a risk is totally unacceptable, and this is why officers from all four Welsh forces will continue to carry out proactive patrols to target motorists who endanger themselves and other road users. No call, text, app, or email is that important – they must all wait until you’ve stopped driving.”
Susan Storch, Chair of Road Safety Wales added:
“Driving while using a mobile phone is not only illegal but dangerous. It doesn’t just put your own life at risk but also the lives of your passengers and other road users who may not have a say in your actions behind the wheel.
“While it’s saddening to see that so many motorists got caught using a mobile phone whilst driving it has also demonstrated the resolve of all the Road Safety Wales partners in tackling this issue and we will continue to work together to drive home the message that no call or text is that important.”
During the campaign officers also detected 200 other offences whilst carrying out checks – they included offences known to contribute to fatal and serious collisions, such as drink and drug driving, speed, not wearing a seat belt, carelessness, no insurance, drugs and construction and use offences.
- Don’t make or answer calls when you’re driving
All phone calls distract drivers’ attention from the road. You can pick up any missed calls or texts when it is safe and convenient to do so. If you need to use the phone when driving, then stop at the first safe opportunity
- It’s illegal to use a hand-held mobile when driving on the road even if you’ve stopped at traffic lights or are stuck in a traffic jam or are in a car park
All these situations are covered by the legal definition of ‘driving on the road’.
- Park safely before using your mobile phone
Do not park on the hard shoulder of the motorway.
- Don’t call other people when they’re driving
If you call someone and they tell you they are driving, ask them to call you back when they have parked up safely.
Main Image: racfoundation.org