Some motoring organisations believe punishments need to be made even tougher
Over the last four years, it’s been revealed via a Freedom of Information request that over 6,000 motorists in the UK have been caught TWICE, at least, for being behind the wheel and using a mobile phone.
Figures released by the DVLA revealed that more than 400 motorists were caught three times, whilst 20 drivers were caught four times and three managed to be caught five times!
Despite tougher new punishments being introduced, motoring organisations claim these figures show how some drivers are still choosing to ignore the new rules regarding mobile phone use whilst driving.
The data revealed is related to the number of CU80 endorsements held on driving records in the UK which are handed out to offending motorists who might have been caught not in full control of their vehicle because they may have been spotted using their mobile phone or other device whilst driving, which is illegal.
These endorsements stay on the offenders driving licence for a total of four years before being cleared.
According to the data, around 174,000 motorists in the UK have at least one CU80 endorsement, however only 309 of these were disqualified as a result.
“The threat of a second endorsement and the possibility that they will lose their licence is clearly not enough to deter this hard core of drivers,” said Pete Williams, road safety spokesman for the RAC.
Motorists caught using a hand-held phone whilst behind the wheel now face a £200 fine and six points on their licence, plus drivers can have their licence taken off them if they receive 12 points within three years, or six points in the first two years after just passing their driving test.
According to Mr Williams, repeat offenders seem to believe that there’s ‘little chance of seeing a traffic police officer’.
Over the past decade, the number of road traffic police officers has dropped by 27% in England and Wales.
Director of campaigns at the road safety charity Brake, Mr Josh Harris, has asked for ‘the menace of distracted driving’ to be addressed as a matter of urgency.
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