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Motorists on mobiles targeted in police crackdown

Using your mobile like this could cost you £200 Credit: PA

Police are today launching a week long crackdown on motorists using their mobile phones while driving.

Many drivers continue to make calls, use social media and even taken photos and videos while driving despite an increase in the penalties.

Dumfries and Galloway police today warned: “For the next seven days we will be targeting those drivers who risk their own lives and the lives of others by using their mobile phone behind the wheel.”

A change in the law introduced earlier this year means drivers now face a £200 fine and six penalty points for mobile phone use.

The campaign is taking place across the UK and will remind motorists that the penalties increased earlier this year for those caught using a hand-held mobile phone while driving.

Using a mobile phone while driving has been illegal since December 2003.

Studies show that drivers using a mobile are slower at recognising and reacting to hazards.

A recent 2016 annual report by the RAC, suggests the number of motorists who illegally use mobile phones while at the wheel is rising. 1,714 motorists were surveyed and 31 per cent of motorists said they used a handheld phone behind the wheel compared with eight per cent in 2014.

The number of drivers who said they had sent a message or posted on social media rose from seven per cent to 19 per cent, while 14 per cent said they had taken a photograph or video while driving.