No 10 Response to Mobile Phone Confiscation


Petition:

“We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to introduce driving ban and phone confiscation, if not car confiscation, for drivers caught using/holding mobile phone – potentially lethal weapon.”

“It’s long been recognised that motor vehicles are potentially lethal weapons. Now exacerbated by in-car technology particularly mobile phones. Studies show over 50% of drivers seriously distracted by this technology. To optimise low carbon economic recovery – “global green new deal” – roads must be more efficient/safe. Studies show mobile phone/in-car technology addiction Poll shows 36% of drivers using hand-held mobile whilst driving Millions texting rather than talking Texting endemic – too difficult to police Reaction time of texting driver slowed 35% Reaction time of driver at alcohol limit slowed only 12% Mobiles reportedly linked to some 30 road deaths last year RoSPA say this is tip of iceberg One bereaved mother claims 600 killed Crisis exacerbated by phone access to internet Potentially lethal/essential tool for travel/business/socialising Statham family – mother, father, 4 children – “butchered” by 40 ton truck Logic demands confiscation/driving ban for inappropriate use of mobile phones/in-car technology Phone in drivers hand and ready for use inappropriate Confiscations/bans will guarantee to reduce corpses/jail terms.”

Government:

“The Government is aware of the road safety risks caused by the use of mobile phones whilst driving. This is why it introduced a new offence specifically prohibiting the use of hand-held mobile phones, in addition to the well-established general offence of failing to exercise proper control of a motor vehicle.

The penalties for these offences are already significant. For a prosecution, courts have the power to disqualify an offender from driving, for which there is no upper limit, or to impose three penalty points and a fine of up to £1,000 (£2,500 if driving a bus, coach or goods vehicle).”

And then they say (clearly £60 is a ‘harsh penalty’ considering how many people do it and how many accidents there are):

“Alternatively, the offender may be offered the option of a fixed penalty notice with three penalty points and a £60 fine.

“The Government is not convinced that the introduction of further penalties at this stage would create a more effective deterrent. In particular, should this involve confiscation of a mobile phone, it is more than likely that many offenders would simply acquire a replacement phone as soon as possible, whether or not they went on to use it whilst driving.”

Well, the current system is not working. I wonder how many motorist reoffend for the same thing? If they go out and buy another phone, and then get caught again, what about more penalty points?

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