Drivers warned on mobile phone use following police action week

via Surrey Police

Surrey and Sussex police have once again employed an unmarked lorry from National Highways to check vehicles, in an action week earlier this December.

The latest “Operation Tramline” saw the two forces carry out patrols on the M25, M23, A23 and A27.

Of 99 vehicles stopped for offences, 19 were for drivers using a mobile phone at the wheel and 25 were for not being in proper control of the vehicle, often due to mobile phone use.

Sergeant Huw Watts said: “It is disappointing that such a large number of the offences were for people driving while using a mobile phone.

“This operation has run five times this year and Sussex and Surrey forces were the second most productive forces in the country for vehicle checks.

“It shows that people are continuing to flout the law and put themselves and others in danger. We will continue to enforce the law and to help reduce the number of people who are killed or seriously injured by an irresponsible minority of road users.”

Using a mobile phone and being distracted behind the wheel is one of the “fatal five” driving offences which lead to deaths or serious injury: the others are driving at an inappropriate speed, drink and/or drug-driving, not wearing a seatbelt in a vehicle, and careless or inconsiderate driving.

Different types of vehicles were checked in the initiative, including HGVs for weight limits and driving hours.

Various infringements led to vehicle seizure (two cases), fixed or graduated penalties, and reporting for possible points and court summons, while other drivers received words of advice.

Surrey and Sussex Roads Policing Unit Chief Inspector Michael Hodder said: “This operation in partnership with National Highways demonstrates that officers are taking road safety seriously, and enforcing the law against all offenders regardless of vehicle type.”

  • The full police news release is here.

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