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Traffic rules could see passengers who use mobile phones in cars fined £1,000 Bath City News

Passengers could face a fine for using a mobile phone in a car under tough new traffic rules. Drivers who even touch a phone in the face could be hit with a £200 fine after tough new rules come into force on Friday.

Now, if someone supervises a learner driver, they could be hit with a £1,000 fine – as well as six points on their licence. Current traffic rules make it illegal to text or call while driving.

But new rules introduced on Friday mean many gray areas have been tightened, making more actions illegal. In 2019, it was ruled by the High Court that an offense was committed when a mobile was used for an “interactive communication function”.

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This included calling or texting, but using a phone for any purpose is now considered “reckless and dangerous”. Now drivers can no longer touch their device, take photos or videos, access playlists or use other apps while driving.

Using the phone at traffic lights or in motorway queues will also be considered illegal under the new traffic rules. Anyone using a device while driving faces a fixed fine of £200 plus six points added to their driving license, Mirror Online reports.

Motorists are, however, allowed to use their phones to pay at a drive-through restaurant or at a road or bridge toll. The Department for Transport: “There will be an exemption to the new law for drivers making a contactless payment using their mobile phone while stationary to ensure the law keeps up with changing technology.

“This exemption will cover, for example, places like a drive-thru restaurant or a road toll, and will only apply when payment is made with a card reader. It will not allow motorists to make online general payments while driving.”

Hands-free devices can be used while driving, including taking calls or using a GPS, but only if they are secured in something that holds them.

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This notice was published: 2022-03-29 07:26:14

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