/ GMP warns motorists of using a mobile phone

Greater Manchester Police is supporting a national campaign to raise awareness of the dangers of using a mobile phone while driving and spreading the word on tougher penalties.

Under the new legislation, which is expected to come into effect on the 1st March, motorists who are caught using a mobile while driving will receive six points on their licence and a £200 fine, double the current punishment.

Hoping to act as a deterrent for those breaking the law, and anyone sharing a car with them, the new law could see drivers who break it having their licence revoked for a first offence under the New Driver Act.

Inspector Tony Allt, of GMP’s Roads Policing Unit, said: “We continue to bring home the message that using a mobile phone while driving is not only illegal but should be considered socially unacceptable. As Chief Constable Hopkins said during our last campaign, you wouldn’t let someone who has been drinking get behind the wheel… why would you let someone use their mobile phone while driving?

“These laws are not just restricted to the traditional view of making a call with the phone held to your ear. Checking social media pages or glancing at a text that has just come through, in fact any form of communication, are equally dangerous and can severely compromise your attention to the road. We’ll have marked and unmarked patrols out this week to support the national campaign, stopping drivers and carrying out road side checks.

“Our message is clear, mobile phones are wrong for the road. Leave it alone until you’ve stopped driving.”

As well as increasing traffic operations GMP will also be spreading the word on the new impending legislation and the dangers associated with using a mobile while driving as part of the #WrongForTheRoad social media campaign.
Anyone with information of persistent offenders who drive while using their mobile phone should contact local officers or call 101 with details.

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