• Sat. Oct 1st, 2022

These are the changes to mobile phone laws for drivers that will come into force next month

Drivers are advised to pay attention to impending changes in mobile phone legislation.

The new laws, which come into effect next month, say motorists cannot check notifications, unlock their devices, make, receive or reject phone or internet calls, or send, receive or download spoken or written content.

Other prohibited actions include: writing a text message, accessing stored data such as books, audio files, photos, videos, movies, playlists, notes or messages , Internet access or use of a camera connected to a device.

Drivers will face a £200 fine and six points on their license from Friday March 25 when the new laws come into force.

Road users will still be able to use the satellite navigation features of the devices, provided they are properly secured in a suitable cradle or stand.

Making or receiving a hands-free call is not an offense in itself, but could result in criminal prosecution if later found to be a contributing factor to a collision.

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Inspector Clare Gibson, of Nottinghamshire Police’s Serious Collision Investigation Unit, said: ‘We know how tempting it can be to use your phone or answer a call or a notification while driving – but this can have very serious consequences.

“Using your phone while driving is against the law and these new laws introduced next month could result in people being banned from driving, especially those who already have points on their licence.

“Please don’t make us knock on doors anymore to tell people their loved ones have been killed or seriously injured. Keep both hands on the wheel and give your full attention to the road. This change of text, email or music can always wait a little longer.

Research suggests that many people who use a hands-free device think it’s the safe option, but the reality is that they’re actually four times more likely to be involved in a crash and are far less likely to notice and react to hazards.

A driver using their phone can also be intoxicated just as much as a drunk driver, which is why hands-free calling can and does lead to criminal prosecution.

Although the new law is incredibly strict, there are some exceptions to the law, including using a phone in a drive-through restaurant or a road toll when payment is made.

Nottinghamshire Police are currently taking part in the national Fatal Four campaign which focuses on enforcing mobile phone use until Sunday February 27.

Inspector Gibson added: ‘These new laws are being introduced to make our roads safer because telephones provide so many distractions and we want the people of Nottinghamshire to know and those passing through the county that if you break the law you will be for follow-up.

“It only takes a second of distraction for an accident to occur and a person, be it the driver or another motorist or a pedestrian, to be killed or seriously injured.

“The majority of drivers these days follow the laws but may not realize that it is illegal to use their phone for the stated reasons.

“There are many ways to resist the temptation to use your phone while driving, including turning it off completely, placing it in the glove box or trunk, and downloading useful apps to send a message indicating that you are driving.”