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UK News

Police chaplain warns against using mobile phone while driving

by Eno Adeogun

The Department for Transport's THINK! Campaign made by the same people behind Pharrell Williams' Happy music video, is aimed at 17 to 24 year olds and will be shown in cinemas and on social media from Wednesday.

Rev Wingman Tsang, a Christian police chaplain from West Sussex told Premier why campaigns like this are needed.

Speaking during News Hour he said: "Because people don't realise the danger of using their telephones, they think 'well, I can do several things at once'.

"What they don't realise is while they are using their mobile phones ... they are actually going to be the cause of an accident that is so easily avoided."

The effect of looking at your phone for 2.3 seconds whilst driving at 30 miles an hour means you miss looking at 100 feet of road.

In March 2017, the penalties for holding and using your phone while driving increased to 6 points and £200.

However, according to the RAC Report on Motoring 2017, 23 per cent of drivers admitted to using a handheld mobile at the wheel to make or take a call in the past 12 months, and 12 per cent admitted to checking texts, email or social media.


Rev Tsang said it's a misconception that a quick glance at your phone won't hurt.

He told Premier: "It's devastating when you go to an accident and you see that the car is smashed up. Obviously it's the traffic police who investigate later and provide the evidence that a car phone has been used.

"But when you arrive at any scene, quite often the road conditions are good and you think, 'what is it that they're doing at the time that caused them to miss the obvious and plough into the car in front or swerve into an oncoming car?'"

It's illegal in the UK to use a handheld mobile when driving. This includes using your phone to follow a map, read a text or check social media. This applies even if you're stopped at traffic lights or queuing in traffic.

You can only use a handheld phone if you are safely parked or need to call 999 or 112 in an emergency and it's unsafe or impractical to stop.

Listen to Rev Wingman Tsang speaking with Premier's Eno Adeogun:

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