Warwickshire drivers on mobile phones are 'risking their lives' - The Leamington Observer

Warwickshire drivers on mobile phones are 'risking their lives'

Leamington Editorial 4th Mar, 2021   0

DRIVERS using mobile phones are ‘risking their lives’ says a Warwickshire officer after police prosecuted over 60 drivers for using their phones on the road.

The operation to flush out drivers using their phones was part of a national campaign aimed at changing driver behaviours and highlighting the consequences.

The offence has been named as one of the ‘fatal four’ factors causing death and injury on the road, alongside not wearing a seatbelt, drink and drug driving and speeding. In Warwickshire, using a mobile phone while driving was a contributory factor in five serious crashes in 2019 and two in 2020

Inspector Jem Mountford said “I find it shocking that so many drivers are willing to risk their life and the lives of others by using their mobile phone whilst driving.

“The results are due to a tremendous effort made by all front line officers from all departments including our Commercial Vehicle Unit, Operations Patrol Unit, Safer Neighbourhood Teams and the Special Constabulary all working together.

“Several SNT teams completed mini-operations with static officers observing traffic to see if drivers were using mobile phones whilst driving. The campaign also coincided with Operation Tramline which saw our Commercial Vehicle Unit using the Highways England owned HGV supercab on the M40 and M42 to observe driver behaviours and it was shocking to see so many drivers choosing to use a mobile phone at motorway speeds.”

It is hoped the combination of officers stopping and talking to these drivers to help educate them, six points and a £200 fine, will make them reconsider their behaviour. Police are also asking those who may be tempted, to put their phone away out of sight or to switch it off.

Warwickshire Police and Crime Commissioner Philip Seccombe said: “These figures just go to show how important it is to continue a programme of enforcement alongside educating drivers of the dangers. My Road Safety Fund supports the work of the Commercial Vehicle Unit, which has made a significant contribution to detecting these offences. In just five days on motorways in Warwickshire, officers from the unit identified 49 drivers using phones illegally and were able to take action against the offenders.

“Good police work alone cannot stop dangerous driving behaviours and it will take a change in people’s attitudes to how they use the roads in the long term. Ultimately, I want us to get to a situation where road safety is everyone’s top priority. I will continue to seek out and support initiatives across Warwickshire which will help to bring about a change for the better in attitudes among all road users so that we reduce further the numbers of people killed or seriously injured on our roads.”

Police are asking the public to submit any dashcam or GoPro footage they have captured which could be used to prosecute someone for using a phone while driving to Operation Snap via www.warwickshire.police.uk/operation-snap.


Advertise with the Leamington Observer to reach your audience


Find a career you'll love with our free career finder website.

Business Directory

From plumbers, to restaurants, we can provide you with all the info you need.

Public Notices

View and download all of the public notices in the Leamington Observer.