The new law on mobile phones when driving

You will be forgiven for thinking this is old news. The use of mobile phones behind the wheel has been banned for a number of years. Whilst this is true, it is not all of the story, and our latest blog post will explain why.

Why is this important?

All law changes are important – this is a simple fact. This change will affect individuals, as many have cars and nearly all have mobile phones. The change will also affect couriers as by the very nature of their work, they are people who spend a lot of time on the road,  and have to keep in regular communication as part of their work. Whatever your reason for opening this article, please read on, because you will find the information very useful!

Old news?

Originally yes, using the phone behind the wheel was banned, but the wording in the legislation was not specific enough. When tested at court, it seemed to only apply to making phone calls or sending text messages. Presumably, when the legislation was enacted, it was based on usage of a mobile phone in the 90s when you really could only make calls or texts on them. Many of us now have smartphones and know that they can do 1001 other things and this is where the ‘loophole’ has crept in. Under existing law, someone playing a game on their phone for example, or using the phone for any other purpose except calls or text could not be prosecuted because the wording of the law did not reflect this.

What has changed?

Basically, the above loophole. As of the 25th March 2022, any use of a mobile phone behind the wheel is now illegal. The fine could be up to £1,000 aswell as 6 points on a driving licence. People are now being urged to avoid temptation and put phones away in their gloveboxes as soon as they get into the car. Remember now that even if your phone is in a cradle holder and you are scrolling through music, you can now be prosecuted. In the worst cases this can include anything up to and including careless or dangerous driving!

Exceptions

As with any laws there are exceptions. Some would argue why make exceptions as this is the whole point of closing the loophole. These exceptions are deemed to be more ‘sensible’ however than the original loophole.

* Contactless payments are allowed but as may be obvious, the vehicle has to be stationary in order for this to be allowed. Indeed, any such use of a phone whilst parked and engine off should be fine, but not temporarily stationary (e.g. at traffic lights.)

* Hands free use is still allowed, so long as the phone is properly secured.

What are we doing at Rock Solid Deliveries about this matter?

As with any courier / delivery business, we know our drivers and same day couriers spend most of their time on the road. We think that road safety is crucial to ensuring that everyone is kept safe. We have communicated this change in law with our employees and stressed how important it is. All our employees do not handle any electronic devices until they are safely parked up. We are a trusted and safe operating business and want to maintain this high accolade.

Do you work with money and are you in need of a courier? Visit our banking & finance courier section for more details.

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