Cell Phones Are Banned For British Drivers. It Is The Law!

New rules on the use of handheld phones by drivers were published in Britain on 27 October, ending speculation about their content.

The new regulations are simple and unambiguous — from 1 December 2003, it will be a criminal offense to use a handheld mobile phone at any time while driving.

The regulations neither prohibit nor allow any specific type of equipment, phone, or connector but make it an offense to hold a phone while driving and cover all activities associated with creating or receiving a call, including dialing.

The new regulations do not affect the present law, which imposes an absolute obligation on drivers to have complete control of the vehicle anyhow [n.b. the offense of “driving while not in a position as to have proper control of a vehicle” is dealt with by Regulation 104, Road Vehicles Construction and Use Regulations 1986] and to drive with due care and attention at all times.

While using a hands-free phone will not be an offense, drivers will face criminal prosecution and penalties ranging from a simple fine to disqualification and even imprisonment if any aspect of the call adversely affects their driving, especially if it leads to a crash.

Kevin Delaney, Traffic and Road Safety Manager for the Royal Automobile Club (RAC) Foundation, said:
“The new regulations introduce a welcome note of clarity and send a clear message to drivers and their employers about the hazards associated with using handheld mobile phones.

“The time has come to put speculation and rumor behind us and take a realistic approach to minimize, which can and does reduce concentration and car control.

“As well as using only hands-free phones, drivers and employers should adopt a more responsible attitude to using phones. Keep your hands on the wheel, your eyes on the road, and your mind on driving.”

Source: RAC (UK) via Newspress