Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 17°C

min temp: 12°C

Search

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

PUBLISHED: 17:59 04 February 2013 | UPDATED: 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.

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.

A Suffolk vicar is speaking out about the sexual abuse he suffered as a young man – a secret he has kept for almost 40 years – in a bid to stop women suffering at the hands of men.

A Suffolk-based charity has broken the world record for the longest fashion show – raising £24,000 for its work in the process.

Six Ipswich drug dealers have been given prison sentences totalling 19 years following a police operation targeting the supply of heroin in the town.

Fans have a big role to play in the “massive” East Anglian derby this weekend – and must cheer on the Blues all the way to victory.

Police are appealing for witnesses following an early morning burglary in Ipswich where a laptop, cigarettes, food and drink were stolen.

Police chiefs in Suffolk and north Essex are to review their financial situations as fellow East Anglian force Norfolk announces the biggest shake-up in its history.

Steam railway fans will have to wait three weeks longer to see Flying Scotsman steaming to Ipswich.

The Government is to contribute nearly £13m towards the cost of three new road schemes in Suffolk and Essex.

Parents using “free” childcare at some Suffolk providers feel they have to pay top-up fees because the funding from government and the county council is inadequate.

Three nationally-acclaimed poets will be taking to the stage at the Seckford Theatre in Woodbridge to inspire the next generation of Suffolk’s young writers.

Most read

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24