Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 11°C

min temp: 5°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Suffolk: New figures reveal number of motorists caught using mobiles behind the wheel

17:59 04 February 2013

Driver using mobile phone, posed by model.

Driver using mobile phone, posed by model.

Archant

POLICE have issued a stark warning to motorists after new figures revealed that more than 13,000 drivers have been caught using their mobile phones behind the wheel in six years.

shares

The statistics reveal that since 2007, 13,532 motorists have been fined after being caught on their phones while driving.

Of the motorists fined for the dangerous offence, 7,262 drivers opted to pay a £60 fine and take three points on their licence. A further 890 offenders failed to pay their fine within the 28-day period granted, resulting in them being fined £90.

In total, fines for using a mobile while driving amount to more than £500,000 over the six-year period. The data shows that in 2012 alone, 2,600 fines were issued for the offence – a 30% rise on the previous year.

Sergeant Paul Ward, of Suffolk police’s casualty reduction team, said his team were targeting motorists who use their phones while driving as part of an ongoing safety initiative.

“It is very concerning what people do behind the wheel,” he said. “We have caught people speaking on their phones and recently even caught a man typing a message on a palm-held device while driving.

“Reaction times go down by 50% when drivers are on their phones and that is dangerous.

“My message to people has to be that doing this is an awful offence because it is so dangerous. Not only are people putting their own lives at risk but they are also risking the lives of others.”

The statistics also show more than 5,000 motorists who did not pay their fines would have either of been summoned to court or opted to complete an awareness court.

Sgt Ward said using a mobile while driving was one of the “fatal four”, which also includes speeding, drink driving and not wearing a seatbelt.

shares

13 comments

  • They should park up near Asda bury rd every morning they would catch loads either on the phone or sending texts i see it all the time

    Report this comment

    Robert Bulmer

    Monday, February 4, 2013

  • Weary Traveller ; the only way you are not going to get distracted whilst driving, is to remove all car radioscd players and not to have any passengers in the car who might talk to you( or even sneeze). The reasoning behind banning" hand held" mobiles was to get drivers to have full control of their vehicles - we have all seen people trying to turn corners -steer round on roundabouts - changing gear "Look no hands" style.

    Report this comment

    The original Victor Meldrew

    Monday, February 4, 2013

  • ONE OF THE REASONS I BOUGHT THE FORD TITANIUM ,ITS FITTED WITH BLUE TOOTH PHONE CONNECTION ,. THIS SHOULD BE STANDARD SAFETY FITTING NOW ON ALL CARS ..THESE IDIOTS WHO PERSIST IN USING MOBILE PHONES WHILE DRIVING ,, CONFISCATE THE VEHICLE , AND STILL GIVE THE FINE ,, ITS THE ONLY WAY NUMB-SKULLS LEARN

    Report this comment

    MIGUEL100

    Monday, February 4, 2013

  • Then take the radio out of your car to stop you signing to songs or getting mad at the news. Stop selling cigarettes in shops so people don't smoke them while driving. Remove advertisement boards from the sides of roads so people don't look at them. Get rid of drive through takeaways so people aren't tempted to eat the burger without parking first. There is always going to be distractions but some don't cause you to take your eyes off the road like texting does or dialling a number does. Mobile phone use is just one of many problems that cause accidents on our roads. So if you can't comply with the RULES, DO NOT DRIVE! The rules are so so so SIMPLE, don't drink and drive, don't eat and drive, don't smoke drive, don't speed while driving, don't use a hand held phone and drive, don't read a map and drive, don't do your make up and drive. The list goes on but if you are too THICK to comply, then simply do not drive, it's not rocket science.

    Report this comment

    Kevin Smith

    Monday, February 4, 2013

  • Good! The more who are prosecuted, and tell their friends and colleagues, the better. Perhaps people will then think twice before doing it and instead concentrate on their driving.

    Report this comment

    On Two Wheels

    Monday, February 4, 2013

  • Of course doing anything distracting whilst driving is dangerous and should be actively discouraged. So can someone please enlighten me why using a bluetooth or earpiece is allowed? Surely you can still be distracted and your thinking is on the call not driving. The only difference you are not holding a handset. Distraction is the enemy, so STOP all mobile calls by whatever means!

    Report this comment

    Weary Traveller

    Monday, February 4, 2013

  • ONE OF THE REASONS I BOUGHT THE FORD TITANIUM ,ITS FITTED WITH BLUE TOOTH PHONE CONNECTION ,. THIS SHOULD BE STANDARD SAFETY FITTING NOW ON ALL CARS ..THESE IDIOTS WHO PERSIST IN USING MOBILE PHONES WHILE DRIVING ,, CONFISCATE THE VEHICLE , AND STILL GIVE THE FINE ,, ITS THE ONLY WAY NUMB-SKULLS LEARN

    Report this comment

    MIGUEL100

    Monday, February 4, 2013

  • A £60 fine is ridiculus - a phone can cost about £300! The fine should be at least a weeks wages. That is around £70 for someone on benefits or £100,000 if your Wayne Rooney.

    Report this comment

    Colin58

    Monday, February 4, 2013

  • I agree entirely with Weary Traveller. You cannot drive safely with the distraction of mobile calls and texting. The same goes for loud music in the vehicle. It is stupid, selfish and a complete disregard for not only your own life,but the lives of other road users.

    Report this comment

    Sirius

    Monday, February 4, 2013

  • I totally agree with Kevin Smith. If you don't want one of those ear pieces, buy a bluetooth set that clips to the sun visor, they start around £30. Still half the price of a fixed penalty ticket and points. I recently had a bluetooth device fitted to my car that cuts in through the car speakers at a cost of £100 fitted. Worth every penny.

    Report this comment

    The original Victor Meldrew

    Monday, February 4, 2013

  • There is no excuse for it useless you are extremely THICK. A blue tooth ear piece can be bought for £15, the fine for holding your phone is 4 times that. Plus 3 points which puts your insurance up making the cost of not spending £15 at lot more. So do the maths and if you can't, you must stop driving because you are too THICK.

    Report this comment

    Kevin Smith

    Monday, February 4, 2013

  • Got to love the way they aggregate SIX years' worth of tickets to get a good headline figure. It's rather less impressive when you do the maths and work out that it amounts to fewer than SIX motorists each day spotted by the whole of Suffolk Constabulary's patrolling plods. Pretty pathetic when I generally spot more than that in a five or six hour ride on my bike.

    Report this comment

    beerlover

    Monday, February 4, 2013

  • Of course doing anything distracting whilst driving is dangerous and should be actively discouraged. So can someone please enlighten me why using a bluetooth or earpiece is allowed? Surely you can still be distracted and your thinking is on the call not driving. The only difference you are not holding a handset. Distraction is the enemy, so STOP all mobile calls by whatever means!

    Report this comment

    Weary Traveller

    Monday, February 4, 2013

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

Car crash. Library image.

Firefighters were called to a crash in Orchard Lane, Pakenham, last night.

David Carr, 43, and Marie Williams, 40, who both work for Greene King in Bury St Edmunds

Two brewery employees from Bury St Edmunds are taking on the London Marathon for Macmillan Cancer Support.

Woman arrested over Leiston stabbings

A 27-year-old woman has been arrested in connection with the stabbing of two men in Leiston yesterday.

Trudi Nicholls of Fork Rent

With almost 30 years’ business experience in Suffolk, Trudi Nicholls comes across as a strong, confident businesswoman.

Stage 5 of the Womens Tour passes through Onehouse on their way to Bury St Edmunds last year

Schoolchildren will also be involved in an evening of activities in Bury St Edmunds ahead of the start of a major women’s cycling event.

Konrad Kantorowski flips from the wheel while coach John Colles looks on.

Heading down to the Kesgrave Sports Hall on a weeknight, you would probably be forgiven for expecting to find clubs practising regular sports. But sharing hall space with the local badminton team on a Thursday evening is a rather more unexpected gathering.

Paul Heiney filming for Secret Rivers in his Candaian-style canoe that has been stolen

Broadcaster Paul Heiney has made an appeal for thieves who stole one of his favourite boats from a Suffolk harbour to have a conscience and return it.

Photo issued by the National Crime Agency of fugitive Paul Monk, who featured on the UK's most wanted list on suspicion of drug trafficking, who has been captured in Alicante.

A fugitive on the UK’s most wanted list allegedly linked to a Colchester drugs haul has been arrested in Spain.

Lifeboat tows stricken vessel.

The West Mersea Lifeboat helped the skipper of the yacht Aldebarn as the vessel was dragging its anchor in the River Blackwater.

Grand Central, Ipswich

The opening of new Ipswich restaurant Grand Central - at the former Quayside on the Waterfront - is just days away.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages