Call to ban business drivers caught using phones

Call to ban business drivers caught using phones

Business drivers using their mobile phone behind the wheel should face tougher punishments, a top police officer has said.

Chief Constable Suzette Davenport, lead officer at the Association of Chief Police Officers, wants a ban for delivery drivers and salesmen who are caught twice.

She is calling for a two-tier system, in which other drivers would be punished less harshly.

"The fact is there are too many motorists in general that still use hand held mobile phones while driving and there is a real need to change that behaviour," says RAC Business spokesperson Simon Peevers.

"Whether people are driving for business, going to the shops or doing the school run, the distraction caused by hand-held phone use can lead to disastrous consequences.

"It is right that the Government is currently carrying out a consultation into how to change that behaviour because the challenge has been how to enforce the laws we currently have, which have been in place since 2003, banning all use of hand-held devices while at the wheel."

Miss Davenport claim s the vast majority of professional drivers who use their mobile phone know their actions are illegal but are under such pressure from their employers they are willing to flout the law, posing a disproportionate risk to other road users on motorways and A-roads.

She believes tough penalties, such as a ban, would act as a deterrent to businesspeople thinking of using their mobile phone on the go.

"It may be that the threat of a driving ban is a better deterrent than points and a fine, and worthy of consideration; but rather than set a higher level of punishment for certain drivers the law should be equal and clear for all drivers and crucially, more effectively enforced," adds Mr Peevers.

"In the 2015 Report on Motoring, 79% of drivers said they wanted to see more effective enforcement of existing laws."

Drivers caught using a hand-held phone automatically get three penalty points on their licence and a fine of £100.

Copyright Press Association 2016. Motoring News articles do not reflect the RAC's views unless clearly stated.