For years, drivers using their phones whilst on the road has been a worry. As tempting is it is to take a minute to switch over to another playlist halfway through your journey, there are countless reasons why this poses a threat to yourself and other road users. Due to these dangers, there has been a change in the rules about how you are permitted to use your phone during your drive. Here is the need-to-know information, all in one place…
New rules for mobile phone use
From 25th March 2022, the rules changed so that all motorists who are using a handheld mobile phone behind the wheel, for any reason, are breaking the law. This includes:
- Taking pictures
- Filming videos
- Scrolling through playlists
- Playing games
- Calling or texting
These strict rules carry ramifications if they are broken. If you are caught on your phone, this can result in a fine of £1000 and 6 points on your licence. You could even be given a full driving ban.
Can I ever use my phone?
The only circumstance that you can use your phone on the road is if it’s entirely hands-free. This means that, provided your phone is in a cradle, you can accept calls or use your phone as a sat-nav. This can come in handy during the inevitability of getting lost on your road trip. However, if a police officer is of the opinion that you aren’t in complete control of your vehicle, they can still serve you with a fine. So, get a friend to change the song in future!
Why has the law changed?
In the past, the law regarding mobile phones only applied to interactive use, including taking calls whilst holding the phone. Sometimes, people were able to avoid consequences of their actions by saying that even though they were using their phone, they weren’t engaging in interactive activity. The law has been tightened so that people cannot use this loophole to avoid punishment!
Why is using my phone whilst driving dangerous?
Driving with any kind of distraction is dangerous, but with our phones so readily available, many people have become more blasé about using them in the car. Here are the dangers of driving whilst on your phone:
Being on your phone takes your attention off the road. You should always have your full focus on your driving, and phones reduce your awareness of your surroundings.
Decreased reaction times
A lack of concentration will result in decreased reaction times, leading you into a possible accident if you don’t see a hazard in time.
Affected distance judgement
Your stopping distances and braking distances could be affected by your lack of focus. This could result in an accident if you are driving over the speed limit and don’t notice a hazard.
The road safe charity, Brake, discovered that using your phone whilst driving makes you four times more likely to be involved in a crash. This level of risk just isn’t worth it, so make sure that you are in line with the law and are keeping yourself and your passengers safe.
Here at Lanes School of Driving, our driving lessons ensure that you know the rules of the road and feel comfortable and confident behind the wheel. Contact us now for single or block lessons that can get you ready for your test. Call 020 8166 5678 or email us at .