Police can't afford to stop drivers using mobile phones

Mobile Phone Driver
Drivers are getting away with using their mobile phones at the wheel due to a reduced amount of police officers on the roads, senior officers said yesterday.

This statement comes after two Forces told MPs that staff cuts means that the risk of getting caught for traffic offences is 'probably less than it used to be'.
Official statistics have shown a recent increase of people using their phones at the wheel, which studies have claimed, even with a hands-free kit, is more dangerous than being over the drink-drive limit.

Giving evidence yesterday to MPs, Wiltshire Police's Inspector Steve Cox told the Daily Mail: "There are less road police than there were in the past, so the chance of being caught is probably less than it used to be."

Superintendent Paul Keasey of West Midlands Police told the Daily Mail: "If you haven't got the officers to do the work, the reality is it won't be done.

"People will always see a reduction in numbers as 'are we likely to get caught?'"

According to the RAC, the number of convictions has fallen by 47% in the last five years, from 32,571 in 2009, down to 17,414 in 2014.

Having been a crime since 2003, drivers would have three penalty points and a £100 fine if convicted, with the possibility of a £1000 fine and a ban if they reach the 12-point limit on their license.

Senior officers have called for the penalty to be upped to six points to crack down on the offence.

Author: Jack Healey
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