Drivers in Norfolk to get mobile warning
By Kyle Lindsay
Tuesday, February 17, 2015 - 11:06
Does this raise awareness?
Following a successful trial, a new system that detects whether a mobile phone is being used in a vehicle is about to be rolled out across Norfolk.
The Mobile Phone Detection System (MPDS) is a portable system which identifies whether people are using their mobile phone in a vehicle.
The MPDS is part of the latest enforcement and promotional campaign being run by the Think! Norfolk road safety partnership to remind drivers that using a mobile when behind the wheel is one of the biggest causes of accidents and fatalities on our roads.
The rollout came following a national enforcement campaign in the county last month which targeted drivers using mobile phones.
So far the MPDS is exclusive to Norfolk but it has been welcomed by many road safety groups as an innovative way to get the message across to drivers that using your mobile while driving is one of the most dangerous driving behaviours.
The system targets those using a mobile phone in a vehicle whether on a phone call or receiving/sending a text message… although the daft thing is it can’t differentiate if the mobile phone is being used by a passenger or not which may leave the driver feeling unfairly persecuted or paranoid about prosecution.
Norfolk Constabulary is warning that if drivers are caught using a mobile phone while behind the wheel they will be given a £60 fixed penalty notice and have their licence endorsed with 3 penalty points. This fine can also rise to £1000 if taken to court and £2500 if driving a bus, coach, or heavy goods vehicle.
Iain Temperton, Road Safety Manager at Norfolk County Council, added: “The system can’t detect whether its a passenger using a phone in a vehicle or whether a hands-free device is being used. But of course, those people don’t need to be worried if they get a flash from the sign.”
The Think! Norfolk partnership is made up of Norfolk County Council, Norfolk Constabulary, Norfolk Fire & Rescue Service, Norfolk Safety Camera Partnership and East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust.
Do you think this initiative raises the necessary awareness or can more be done to curb mobile phone use in a car? Let us know in the comments below
Image courtesy of Road Safety GB