British drivers could face jail for using mobile

In the most serious cases, British motorists caught talking on a hand-held mobile phone or sending a text while driving could be charged with dangerous driving, which carries a two-year maximum sentence and an unlimited fine. Currently, motorists face an automatic fine and three points on their license under the lesser charge of careless driving. Using a hand-held mobile while driving was banned in 2003, but thousands of drivers flout the law each day – motoring groups believe this is because the police have failed to charge enough people. The ban does not cover hands-free phones, but drivers who use them can still be charged if police think they're not in control of their car. Drivers are four times more likely to crash if they are holding a mobile or sending a text while at the wheel, the Department for Transport says.

News source: Reuters

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

America Movil and Yahoo Bring Mobile Search to Latin America

Next Story

Zune Device Diagnostic Tool

43 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

I think JAIL for that is a little harsh. A big fine would be much better, I think.

... which carries a two-year maximum sentence and an unlimited fine.

Unlimited? I don't think I would wanna be rude to that cop :P
"Since you badmouthed me earlier, I'll give you a $1,000,000 fine! MUAHAHA!"

i fully support this. infact, i support the installation of sniper turrets alongside roads. Drivers using phones should be shot on sight then bulldozed from the road.

lmfao id be funny for a while but then you'd get an uprising xD

i'd have to say that would be a tad excessive perhaps the phone being shot and also being tagged with some sort of tracker so the police would pick em up later xD

All I can think is there are some really bad drivers out there. I hate people that put there seat belt on when they are driving or just pulling away, if you did that in a driving test you would be failed straight away (for the reason that when you are driving, you should be in control of the car, not with one had off the wheel pulling a seatbelt which affects your ability to drive, just put in on before you move, that what its there for).

Secondly, if you are driving and using a mobile, how are you going to put your indicator on, or change gear (less of a problem with an auto but hey), so if you need to put your indicator on, your going to have to take your hand off the correct part of the steering wheel, and then that means you are not in control of the car as much.

Finally, the same goes for eating, drinking...etc, but smoking has to be the worst, further to the comment above, what if hot ash falls on you, your not telling me you will just sit there and drive normally while your crotch burns, are you chuff, you would get distracted and then could cause an accident.

I am not the perfect driver, but people seem to think that once they are in a car, they are king, and nothing is going to happen, simple fact is, your driving a heavy movable object that if you dont concentrate could kill someone.


Some members of the government are lobbying to make it illegal to use handsfree phones as well as holding a mobile phone to your ear.

I am most unimpressed. How about they ban CB radios for hauliage, make it so the police officer behind the wheel of the vehicle cannot use his radio whilst driving, remove the radios from the cars, oh and whilst you are at it make all cars single occupancy (aka no passengers). Whats next, illegal to listen to an MP3 player whilst walking in public because you MIGHT cause an accident?

Whilst I am all for banning drink driving, because there have been plenty of real world studies showing the affects of said behaviour, talking on a handsfree phone I would like to see a decent public test. Not some fluffed statistics which back up some rediculous claim.


Come on... Jail time for using your handsfree phone? Bah. Humbug!

Hands Free will be banned at some point, it's obvious as it will as it's a major distraction (apprantly) what there argument is, is when your talking to a passenger, the passenger might be aware of a hazard that might happen and will be quiet until it's all clear.

Whereas when your on hands free, the people on the other end won't know of this happening, but the driver will and the driver should be more concentrated on driving but most don't, which is where the accidents happen.

I still believe, if you cause an accident you should be banned for 6months :P


This is where I think there should be refresher tests every 5 years...

The number of different criteria required to pass a test today is vastly more than say 20 years ago. If you were to ask many what xyz sign meant, they wouldn't have a clue. And whilst experience counts for a lot, it is those who *think* they know it all who cost people's lives as much as those who are careless.

I hope they never ban hands free calling (with voice dialing of course) because if you ban that you might as well ban talking in the car too...

why dont we just stop charging people for things they have yet to commit. when they make an accident, do it then, but to say one could have happened is just stupid. Throw the officers in jail, they could commit murder with their weapons! doesnt matter if they havent done it yet, it could happen!

shakey said,
i was showing an extreme. of course there are things we should stop before, but this isnt one of them.

You have to be kidding.

You're also missing the point that many, many laws are preventative. Should we get rid of them too? Guns for everyone! Cigarettes for children!

See what happens when you make everything sound like an extreme?

shakey said,
why dont we just stop charging people for things they have yet to commit. when they make an accident, do it then, but to say one could have happened is just stupid.

By the time a careless driver has killed a child, it's a little too late to then take preventative action... :confused:

How long until we have to wear helmets in our cars? Here in California: No seat belt = ticket. Headlights not turned on if its cloudy = ticket. Recrapulous. I got one of those seat belt tickets last year, the cop kept saying how sorry he was...it was obvious he hated it, I told him not to sweat it as he was just doing his job.

Joel said,
People have got to be morons to drive without their seatbelt on.

Nice moron drive by Joel.
99% of the time I do wear a seatbelt, but sometimes I don't put it on the instant I get in. This particular time was one of those times. I got stopped in about 3 minutes after getting in my car and leaving the gym parking lot, I would have had it on within 1 more minute at the stoplight 25 yards from the gym parking lot. The cop had a very narrow window to see and stop me...just wasn't my lucky day. Is that ok Dad?

:huh:

Just curious but why would you get in your car, start it, and pull out onto the road without putting on your seat belt if you planned on doing it anyway? It takes what, a second? I mean it seems like it would have been a whole lot simpler to just put it on when you got in rather than waiting until your sitting at a stop light. It's like waiting until your out on the highway to close the door, lol.

Seatbelts are both for the user's and other people's protection.

Person in the back not wearing a seatbelt = smashing into the back of the front seat, possibly breaking that person's neck.

I read once something high like 80%+ of fatal accidents happen within a mile of home because of this very reason. People think that you'll be okay for a couple of minutes.

Next time you get on a rollercoaster dont put on your safety straps... sure most of the time you would be okay as most rides are designed to hold you in without them, but every now and again im sure you wont be so lucky.

TRC said,
:huh:

Just curious but why would you get in your car, start it, and pull out onto the road without putting on your seat belt if you planned on doing it anyway? It takes what, a second? I mean it seems like it would have been a whole lot simpler to just put it on when you got in rather than waiting until your sitting at a stop light. It's like waiting until your out on the highway to close the door, lol.


I don't know. I'm not perfect I do things in various ways on various days.. what are you guys, robots? What strange reactions to my comment...its like I killed the pope or something.

Now things like smoking and putting on makeup should also be formally banned under a specific law, rather than just dangerous driving which is never enforced for such things when it could be.

Drinking, smoking etc. Should all involve the same punishment as the phone.

However this isn't true.
Our prisons are overcrowded as it is, I'm 90% the Government aren't going to use what little space they have left in the prisons, for mobile phone users.

A harsher cash fine should be implemented

The cellphone in itself is not the problem. It's the fact that a part of your concentration isn't where it really matter (on the road).

Please be responsible of yourself and the others around you on the road. If you need to do a call, park yourself and go after.

I think jail time is definately a little excessive. But then again, people who do talk while holding their phones are very dangerous I cant even count the number of times that I've almost been in an accident because of someone who wasnt paying attention, and the one time I was in an accident because some lady was talking on her cellphone and completely cut into my lane without paying attention.

I've sadly seen some men reading the newspaper while driving on the highway...and I do not mean while in bumper to bumper traffic. Reading at 70mph.

seen a man shaving and using hes rear view as the mirror on the motorway speeding off, only to see him being pulled over by the police a few junctions down

I would think common sense would be enough to keep most people from texting while driving. Are you telling me that many Brits are texting while driving to warrant jail? I agree everyone should be hands free while driving and I think most vehicles come equipped now with hands free, but again, Jail?? How about a fine first. Blimey

solardog said,
I would think common sense would be enough to keep most people from texting while driving. Are you telling me that many Brits are texting while driving to warrant jail? I agree everyone should be hands free while driving and I think most vehicles come equipped now with hands free, but again, Jail?? How about a fine first. Blimey :huh:

Both of which are already illegal in britain. They come under "driving without due care and attention". So dont go on a witch hunt. The last thing we need is labour bringing out more motorist laws and forgettting about the rest of the country.

Its may be only jail if your are a cause of a serious car accident and you happened to be using your phone at the same time.

You're kidding me, right? Common sense?!! Most people don't know what is, let alone, how to use it.

There should've been a law like this EVERYWHERE since the day the cell phone was invented!

I use my phone while im driving handsfree only and still believe myself to be a safe driver, i can agree that holding it can cause problems but handsfree is fine in my honest opinion.

totally agreed, i see way too many people on mobile phones while driving, this hopefully will make people think twice about using there phones.

WarningHPB said,
totally agreed, i see way too many people on mobile phones while driving, this hopefully will make people think twice about using there phones.

+1, celebs should get more time and higher fines, oh and be publically humiliated, maybe even disallowed to use the specialist lawyers that know the loopholes