GEM: ‘A change of attitude’ needed

GEM Motoring Assist has welcomed the government’s plan to introduce tougher penalties for using their mobile phones while driving, but doubts it will have the desired impact if there aren’t more traffic police to enforce the new laws.

The government announced this week it will increase the penalties for motorists caught on their phones to a £200 fine and six penalty points.

Neil Worth, GEM Motoring Assist road safety officer, said, ‘While we welcome this government move, we all know it is unlikely to carry the weight it could if there were enough traffic police to make it a serious threat to disrupt offending drivers.

‘That’s why we need to ensure there is a widespread national advertising campaign to warn drivers that they’re taking too high a risk and that there is a real threat of being caught if they persist in using a phone while driving.

‘Enforcement is a much more effective tool if it’s accompanied by a memorable and hard-hitting education and publicity campaign, where the focus is a call for a change in attitude, to make using a phone while driving as antisocial as drink-driving.’