1. ITV Report

Hands-free mobile phone use compared to drink drivers

Hands-free mobile sets should be banned and people should turn off their phones while driving, according to a road safety group.

Road safety charity Brake want drivers turn off their hands-free sets because it says mobile phones pose a "similar" threat to road users as drunk drivers would.

The result is that otherwise responsible drivers are increasingly involved in "horrific" accidents.

Brake launched a campaign to highlight the danger of driver distraction for motorists. The use of mobile phones while driving was banned ten years ago, but the charity want to go a further and ban hands-free kits, to stop crashes caused by multitasking at the wheel.

Distraction reduces hazard perception and increases reaction times in a similar way to drink-driving, making drivers much more likely to cause deaths and injuries, it said.

Using a mobile while driving was banned 10 years ago. Credit: ITV News
  • More than half a million UK drivers (575,000) have points on their licence for using their mobile phone at the wheel
  • One in 15 (6.5%) of these drivers have six points or more for driving distracted and four in five (78%) are male
Hands-free sets are almost as bad for road safety as speaking to someone over a mobile phone, road safety campaigners say. Credit: PA