Like many I rejoiced when using a hand held mobile phone while driving became illegal in 2003.
UK Government website THINK states that you’re four times more likely to have a car crash if you use a mobile phone and that your reaction time is 50% slower. The current penalty for using a mobile phone whilst driving is three penalty points on your driving licence and a £100 fine. However, this driving offence can however land you in court with the possibility of being disqualified from driving.
Yet this does not seem to be putting many drivers off. According to a survey completed by the Department for Transport the use of hand held mobile phones while driving is on the up. The number of fatal accidents which involved the use of a mobile phone increased from 17 in 2012 to 22 in 2013, a rise of 29%. The number of all accidents in which a mobile phone played a part rose from 378 to 422, a rise of 10%.
Many of us are tempted when we hear our mobile phones to have a look, even if it’s to just see who or what it is. We must resist and remember that it is not safe to do so while we are driving even if it is just for a split second. That split second is all it takes for your concentration to lapse and an accident to occur.
This month The Mirror reported an incident where a driver was caught using his mobile phone while driving down a dual carriageway in an X-Factor branded bus.
Sadly, as a Personal Injury Solicitor I deal with many fatal road traffic accident claims where use of the phone has been a factor and have seen the devastating consequences this has for the families involved first hand.
If you do a simple search online you will find countless stories of fatal car accidents connected with the use of a mobile phone and until people who think it’s acceptable to use a hand held mobile phone realise how dangerous it is, car accident fatalities will continue to happen.
Jonathan Reid is a Senior Personal Injury Lawyer at Slater and Gordon Lawyers UK.
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