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Friday, December 11, 2009

Number of drivers using handheld mobiles is increasing

TRL, the UK's independent Transport Research Laboratory, says an increasing number of drivers are ignoring the potential danger and the penalty of using hand-held mobile phones when driving.

Its latest research shows that more drivers are now breaking the law using hand-held mobile phones than two years ago – and that's despite heavier penalties being introduced in early 2007.

2.6% of car drivers were using hand-held mobiles in 2006. That figure fell to 1.4% the following year after the penalty was increased to a £60 fine and three points added to a driving licence. Yet the number of drivers breaking the law is now higher than before, at 2.8%.

The study involved over 14,000 drivers in London, although the report's authors think the situation is likely to be the same across the UK.

Women aged 17-29 were most likely to use a hand-held mobile when driving, while men aged 30-59 were most likely to talk on a hands-free device. Hands-free mobile use by car drivers has quadrupled from 1.2% in 2006 to 4.8% in 2009. [Source: BBC News]

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