Police crackdown on drivers using mobile phones at the wheel

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Extra police units will be on the look-out for motorists using their mobile phones at the wheel.

Surrey and Sussex Police’s week-long road safety campaign will start on Sunday (May 23).

Chief Inspector Phil Nicholas said: “If you use your phone while you are behind the wheel you deliberately choose not to pay full attention to your driving.

“Studies show that you concentrate less on your driving and your reaction times slow when you are having a conversation on the phone, even if you are using a hands free kit.

“If you go a step further and take your hands off the wheel to text or use the internet, you are not even looking where you are going so cannot possibly be in control of your vehicle.

“If you need to use your phone, pull over and stop. Gambling with safety by using your phone at the wheel could cost you a hefty fine - or could cost someone their life.”

A police spokesman added: “In the first four months of this year 547 people in Sussex and 598 in Surrey were caught driving while using their mobiles.

“Anyone caught faces being given three penalty points on their licence and a fine of £100. If you refuse to pay the fine you could be prosecuted, banned from driving and fined up to £1,000.

“If officers can prove that you are driving dangerously while using your phone you can be banned from the road and jailed for up to two years.”

People can report motorists driving while using their mobile phone at www.operationcrackdown.co.uk.

Report dangerous driving by calling 999.

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