Driver safety - mobile phones

It’s illegal to use a hand-held phone or similar device while driving

It’s illegal to use a hand-held phone or similar device while driving, or riding a motorcycle.

The rules are the same if you’re stopped at traffic lights or queuing in traffic.

The facts

Studies show that drivers using a hands-free or handheld mobile phone are slower at recognising and reacting to hazards.

Even careful drivers can be distracted by a call or text – and a split-second lapse in concentration could result in a crash.

The law 

It’s illegal to use a handheld mobile phone while driving

  • This includes holding and using your mobile to make a call, look at a text or check social media. It applies even if you’re stopped at traffic lights or queuing in traffic.

If you’re caught using a handheld phone while driving:

  • You’ll get 6 penalty points on your licence and a fine of £200.

  • For new drivers, if you get 6 points in the first two years after passing your test, you will lose your licence.

Using hands-free devices

  • You can use a hands-free phone while driving but you can still be prosecuted if you’re not in proper control of your vehicle.

  • Hands free for calling is permitted when used safely, through technology such as Bluetooth and in-car voice activation.

  • Mobile phones may also be connected to car “infotainment” systems – but the driver must not hold the phone at any time while driving.

  • A mobile phone can be used for navigation if it is hands free and should be securely mounted in a cradle.

Penalties

If you’re caught using a handheld phone while driving, you’ll get six penalty points on your license and a fine of £200. 

This would be an immediate ban for newly-qualified drivers who have a ceiling of six points for the first two years after passing the test

More road safety information

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It’s illegal to use a hand-held phone or similar device while driving

 

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