The Transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin is proposing new plans to increase the penalties for using a mobile phone while driving to 6 points. Currently, the penalty for using your phone on the wheel is 3 points with a £100 fin,e but Mr McLoughlin says that a tougher penalty was needed to prevent more deaths on Britain’s roads due to drivers calling and texting while driving.
The transport secretary was speaking at a Westminster lunch where he told reporters ‘The amount of casualties has been absolutely appalling. We’ve got to change this, we’ve got to get that message across.’
According to a research by the transport research laboratory, mobile phone usage was found to have the highest impact on distraction compared to other vices like drink driving and and drugs.
The results of the finding showed that texting reduces reaction time by 37%, cannabis by 21% while drinking at the legal limit was 13% and speaking on the phone a whopping 46%.
These findings and the proposal made by the Met Commissioner Bernard Hogan-Howe the transport secretary said are among the factors that prompted him to ‘seriously consider’ the proposals even though the death toll by car accidents has reduced over the past year.
‘The person who is using their phone doesn’t realise the damage or the danger that they could be in, so it ends up ruining different people’s lives,’ said Mr McLoughlin.
The proposals which are not expected to come into effect until after the elections next year could mean that a new driver could be banned from driving after one offence.