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Thread: Mobile Phone Use While Driving

  1. #1

    Mobile Phone Use While Driving

    I am cycling about 10 miles up the side of West London as part of my commute to work. I have just started this particular commute.

    Every day, bar none I am watching people sitting in traffic, and moving forward tapping some reply into their phone oblivious to their surroundings. As I am filtering it is a danger to me, but also pedestrians. I have heard it called the new drunk driving.

    I am no Cyclist Mikey, but I stop, peer at them through their window. There is never an argument, somehow their phone just melts out of their hand an onto their lap. Maybe it is time of a head mounted camera at least to scare them into given this habit up.

    I thought 6 points and a large fine might have been a deterrent, but in my cycling experience of passing many cars in traffic each day, many people still consider mobile phone use behind the wheel to be normal.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by noTAGlove View Post
    I am cycling about 10 miles up the side of West London as part of my commute to work. I have just started this particular commute.

    Every day, bar none I am watching people sitting in traffic, and moving forward tapping some reply into their phone oblivious to their surroundings. As I am filtering it is a danger to me, but also pedestrians. I have heard it called the new drunk driving.

    I am no Cyclist Mikey, but I stop, peer at them through their window. There is never an argument, somehow their phone just melts out of their hand an onto their lap. Maybe it is time of a head mounted camera at least to scare them into given this habit up.

    I thought 6 points and a large fine might have been a deterrent, but in my cycling experience of passing many cars in traffic each day, many people still consider mobile phone use behind the wheel to be normal.
    Sadly, I think youíre right.

    I drive about 25k miles a year, on all sorts of roads, and I see it a lot usually when you see a car or lorry weaving/leaving its lane.

    Also in queues of traffic, car behind stops and immediately itís eyes down by the driver as theyíre on the phone.

    I was on the A1 a few years ago, in the middle lane overtaking a lorry, when a teabag was ejected from the drivers open window and it landed on my bonnet/windscreen, clearly brewing up.

    People seem to do a lot of other things when they should be driving. Phones are some of the first things checked by the police after a serious collision these days, theyíll work out if you were on your phone at that point or during the journey, and the penalty will be much more severe as a result.

    It does need a bit of a campaign I think, it must be endemic and people donít seem to see it as dangerous at all.

  3. #3
    Grand Master Rod's Avatar
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    It's totally dangerous and stupid behaviour. I get them regularly, more women than men who are frightened they miss something on social media.
    Happens a lot at traffic lights when stationary... eyes down, the lights go green, you set off and they are sat there on their phones for a while, while the cars behind get frustrated.

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    Quote Originally Posted by noTAGlove View Post
    I am cycling about 10 miles up the side of West London as part of my commute to work. I have just started this particular commute.

    Every day, bar none I am watching people sitting in traffic, and moving forward tapping some reply into their phone oblivious to their surroundings. As I am filtering it is a danger to me, but also pedestrians. I have heard it called the new drunk driving.

    I am no Cyclist Mikey, but I stop, peer at them through their window. There is never an argument, somehow their phone just melts out of their hand an onto their lap. Maybe it is time of a head mounted camera at least to scare them into given this habit up.

    I thought 6 points and a large fine might have been a deterrent, but in my cycling experience of passing many cars in traffic each day, many people still consider mobile phone use behind the wheel to be normal.
    It's a disease, even though I only average about six miles a day I'll probably see around six on the phone, either phone in hand or driver glancing down below the level of the steering wheel centre, as diseases go it can often prove terminal, not always to the sufferer.
    "Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. The third time it's enemy action."

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  5. #5
    Grand Master Rod's Avatar
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    This was horrific, I went past this crash moments before it happened...
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-tyne-62235941
    A friend of mine, a Police serious crash investigator, sees phone use many times as the cause of accidents

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tooks View Post
    I was on the A1 a few years ago, in the middle lane overtaking a lorry, when a teabag was ejected from the drivers open window and it landed on my bonnet/windscreen, clearly brewing up.
    Be thankful it wasn't a used nodder..........pesky little truck drivers getting up to all sorts these days

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod View Post
    A friend of mine, a Police serious crash investigator, sees phone use many times as the cause of accidents
    That is sad. I walk the dog everyday and without fail see drivers on their phones. Mums on the school run this morning were witnessed. I regularly see those in high spec cars with phones in their hands too. Surely they have the tech? My old bangers do text and calls on the carís display. Social media can waitÖ

    Itís clearly a symptom of the law not being enforced. If it was my decision, Iíd mount TV campaigns to make it socially unacceptable to handle a phone while driving.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jubal View Post
    That is sad. I walk the dog everyday and without fail see drivers on their phones. Mums on the school run this morning were witnessed. I regularly see those in high spec cars with phones in their hands too. Surely they have the tech? My old bangers do text and calls on the carís display. Social media can waitÖ

    Itís clearly a symptom of the law not being enforced. If it was my decision, Iíd mount TV campaigns to make it socially unacceptable to handle a phone while driving.
    If it were my decision I'd up the penalty to having the vehicle involved taken away and crushed. What about company cars? Well, someone would have an awful lot of explaining to do!
    Best Regards - Peter

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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tooks View Post

    I was on the A1 a few years ago, in the middle lane overtaking a lorry, when a teabag was ejected from the drivers open window and it landed on my bonnet/windscreen, clearly brewing up.
    You were teabagged by a truck driver...?

    I'm always amazed by the number of people not using bluetooth in cars which are clearly set up for it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gunner View Post
    You were teabagged by a truck driver...?

    I'm always amazed by the number of people not using bluetooth in cars which are clearly set up for it.
    Yeah, guess I was! :-D

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Rod View Post
    It's totally dangerous and stupid behaviour. I get them regularly, more women than men who are frightened they miss something on social media.
    Happens a lot at traffic lights when stationary... eyes down, the lights go green, you set off and they are sat there on their phones for a while, while the cars behind get frustrated.
    Agreed, but itís no more dangerous than fiddling with the mass of technology being shoehorned into modern cars, as usual the current implementation of our laws is prioritised to raise revenue and not safety.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by gunner View Post
    You were teabagged by a truck driver...?

    I'm always amazed by the number of people not using bluetooth in cars which are clearly set up for it.
    In any car park in the summer there'll be some arse with the car engine running, aircon on and windows down, I dunno how some dress themselves in the morning.
    "Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. The third time it's enemy action."

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  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Rod View Post
    This was horrific, I went past this crash moments before it happened...
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-tyne-62235941
    A friend of mine, a Police serious crash investigator, sees phone use many times as the cause of accidents
    This is a powerful video appreciate you sharing it. Needless deaths very sad
    Dan

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    Quote Originally Posted by Griswold View Post
    If it were my decision I'd up the penalty to having the vehicle involved taken away and crushed. What about company cars? Well, someone would have an awful lot of explaining to do!
    Something along these lines or just bring back public shaming. No excuse, especially when many have bluetooth capability or a bluetooth device costs a few quid.

  15. #15
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    Its a menace, and it will grow until we send private contractors out on bonus to capture them on video and issue huge fines, the kind you never forget.Same for all offences. BUT you would never get re-elected on any draconian manifesto or a level of taxation to pay for a proper society,hospitals police schools etc.

  16. #16
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    In Italy it's worse. I've even seen a driver on the phone waiting at traffic lights next to a police car. As a bike rider I stopped at a roundabout, I had right of way, one night as I could see the approaching driver's face was lit up and he hadn't noticed me even with a strong light on my bike. Fine the buggers 3 months pay. Not sure shaming would work here.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by MCFastybloke View Post
    Its a menace, and it will grow until we send private contractors out on bonus to capture them on video and issue huge fines, the kind you never forget.Same for all offences. BUT you would never get re-elected on any draconian manifesto or a level of taxation to pay for a proper society,hospitals police schools etc.
    It is no more of a menace than setting the sat-nav, tuning the digital radio, making a phone call or fiddling with the cars settings, but all of these are ok , itís time to ban all of these things, but that wonít happen

  18. #18
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    Is there some sort of technical solution?

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by johny View Post
    Is there some sort of technical solution?
    In modern cars itís easy, they could turn all functions off at say 5mph, they could even issue speeding notices if they wanted to, but the marketing departments would hate it

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrianw View Post
    In modern cars itís easy, they could turn all functions off at say 5mph, they could even issue speeding notices if they wanted to, but the marketing departments would hate it
    Thank you. I was thinking of something like that. Engine on -phone off sort of thing.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrianw View Post
    It is no more of a menace than setting the sat-nav, tuning the digital radio, making a phone call or fiddling with the cars settings, but all of these are ok , itís time to ban all of these things, but that wonít happen
    Phone calls can be protracted, but i do believe the offence is "electronic device" defined by "capable of recieving GPS" . But yes anything that distracts should be a No no

  22. #22
    with the new highway code in Italy we should get the licence suspended for using the phone at the wheel.
    Of course, if they catch you or when it's too late.
    I find it too distracting just to talk and drive...

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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod View Post
    Happens a lot at traffic lights when stationary... eyes down, the lights go green, you set off and they are sat there on their phones for a while, while the cars behind get frustrated.
    Yes, you look in your mirror and donít see a face but the top of someoneís head.

  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by MCFastybloke View Post
    Phone calls can be protracted, but i do believe the offence is "electronic device" defined by "capable of recieving GPS" . But yes anything that distracts should be a No no
    I thought the offence is ďhand heldĒ

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrianw View Post
    It is no more of a menace than setting the sat-nav, tuning the digital radio, making a phone call or fiddling with the cars settings, but all of these are ok , itís time to ban all of these things, but that wonít happen
    Eating and steering with one hand while grasping a cigarette or vape.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrianw View Post
    I thought the offence is “hand held”
    Googled this for my own info,

    The offence (under Regulation 110 of the Road Vehicles (Construction & Use) Regulations 1986) is specified as using a hand-held device for 'interactive communication': principally phone-calls and messages or accessing the internet. Using the device does not need to lead to an accident for the offence to be committed.

    Also found this on .gov.uk

    It’s illegal to hold and use a phone, sat nav, tablet, or any device that can send or receive data, while driving or riding a motorcycle.

    This means you must not use a device in your hand for any reason, whether online or offline.

    For example, you must not text, make calls, take photos or videos, or browse the web.

    The law still applies to you if you’re:

    stopped at traffic lights
    queuing in traffic
    supervising a learner driver
    driving a car that turns off the engine when you stop moving
    holding and using a device that’s offline or in flight mode


    Wording seems to indicate car mounted Sat nav is ok
    Last edited by MCFastybloke; 21st September 2023 at 17:52.

  27. #27
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    Having seen many car charging cable covers / ramps in Berlin this week on pavements, there are dangers closer to home that could be addressed also.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by David_D View Post
    Eating and steering with one hand while grasping a cigarette or vape.
    Food / vape can be dropped, smoking is the worst; no real control of where / how it is dropped if required without causing a fire or risk of burning.

  29. #29
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    The phrase ďWhatsApp gapĒ is often used by cycling Mikey. I see it regularly when out driving, two lanes coming upto a junction or roundabout, stop for 5 seconds, head down phone out. Traffic move fwd, car remains still as said person is engrossed in trivia ! Boils my p.55

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrianw View Post
    I thought the offence is ďhand heldĒ
    The wording of the law is confusing. Afaik, you canít touch a phone even if itís in a cradle. Hands free access only.


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  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mj2k View Post
    Food / vape can be dropped, smoking is the worst; no real control of where / how it is dropped if required without causing a fire or risk of burning.
    And the act of getting a cigarette out of the packet and lighting it is hugely distracting.

  32. #32
    Quote Originally Posted by adrianw View Post
    Agreed, but itís no more dangerous than fiddling with the mass of technology being shoehorned into modern cars, as usual the current implementation of our laws is prioritised to raise revenue and not safety.
    I disagree. Yes, other tech is distracting but a phone also deprives the driver of the use of one hand.

  33. #33
    It boils my p*** when I see people driving whilst looking on their phone, especially when it's on motorways and / or lorry drivers.

    It shouldn't need to be explained to anyone how dangerous using your phone whilst driving is. The law needs to be changed so that manslaughter convictions can be applied in the worst cases.

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by David_D View Post
    And the act of getting a cigarette out of the packet and lighting it is hugely distracting.
    TBH disagree on that, when I smoked, the opening & removal was muscle memory; no concentration required.

    Lit when I could - lighter only, it goes out when thumb is removed; the car lighters seem stupidly dangerous & amazed they remained for so long.

  35. #35
    Quote Originally Posted by ernestrome View Post
    I disagree. Yes, other tech is distracting but a phone also deprives the driver of the use of one hand.
    So does changing gear, you need a hand to fiddle with the tech, a lot of people seem to drive one handed, some seem to think itís cool to have the seat lay back and drive with one hand

  36. #36
    Master Alansmithee's Avatar
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    Never owned a car and walk a lot - I've seen it all - one guy I've seen on my morning walk around the village seems to have a TV set up on the passenger seat so he can watch TV. It's also not uncommon for people to reverse straight onto the pavement without looking.

  37. #37
    Mobile device should not be used under any circumstance whilst driving. Of course its a distraction. The huge table you get in a Tesla though, I can't believe that's not a distraction to a driver as well, as everything is operated from there, no?
    Its bad enough with vehicles you see the has 1 or more passengers in, some people can't even hold a conversation without being distracted, so there could be an argument for banning hands free devices. Someone can be on the motorway, or driving anywhere, not touch there device and with steering wheel control, answer a call, and be in a voice call meeting. Thats distracting enough in its own right.

    There must be some simple thing that could be built into a car, some kind material in the roof say, or paint, that blocks a signal to wifi, or reception inside the car. Anything technological can just be bypassed....You can go in some houses/buildings/ spaces and have no reception...

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod View Post
    This was horrific, I went past this crash moments before it happened...
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-tyne-62235941
    A friend of mine, a Police serious crash investigator, sees phone use many times as the cause of accidents
    There was a programme about this earlier this year. Absolutely heart breaking that a momentary lapse of concentration can cause such utter carnage.



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  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by WarrenVrs View Post
    The wording of the law is confusing. Afaik, you canít touch a phone even if itís in a cradle. Hands free access only.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    In a cradle is fine. Taxi drivers mostly use a PDA (essentially a telephone) to receive jobs from their dispatch office and as long as thatís in a cradle and the driver is fully under control of his car, itís ok in the eyes of the law.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by deanlad View Post
    .

    There must be some simple thing that could be built into a car, some kind material in the roof say, or paint, that blocks a signal to wifi, or reception inside the car. Anything technological can just be bypassed....You can go in some houses/buildings/ spaces and have no reception...
    If you invent something, a week later on Fleabay-Scamazon will be the workaround. The only way to proceed is to change the mindset and the only way with those who are resistant is a sanction of such magnitude that they think Sod that i can wait.Not just a theoretical punishment only if you get caught by the overstretched coppers.

  41. #41
    Quote Originally Posted by MCFastybloke View Post
    If you invent something, a week later on Fleabay-Scamazon will be the workaround. The only way to proceed is to change the mindset and the only way with those who are resistant is a sanction of such magnitude that they think Sod that i can wait.Not just a theoretical punishment only if you get caught by the overstretched coppers.
    I get that. It would have to be something ridiculously draconian, say like an instant ban if caught.That might make people think twice. The only thing against a deterrent though is that it only works ďifĒ you see caughtÖ.

  42. #42
    Grand Master oldoakknives's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrianw View Post
    So does changing gear, you need a hand to fiddle with the tech, a lot of people seem to drive one handed, some seem to think itís cool to have the seat lay back and drive with one hand
    Must admit the Ďrecliner driversí are one of my pet niggles. I see some that are barely visible above the door line/dashboard, how they can see to drive I really donít know. Be interested to know if anyone does it what the attraction is.

    Scariest time I saw someone not paying attention to the road I was a passenger in a friends car and it was on the M1. As we passed a large Merc sitting in the middle lane I looked over to see the driver alternating between looking up at the road and looking down at what was either a book or tablet they were holding on the steering wheel. On a busy motorway and at motorway speeds it was a ridiculous thing to do. Surely nothing can be that important to take that kind of risk.
    Started out with nothing. Still have most of it left.

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by deanlad View Post
    I get that. It would have to be something ridiculously draconian, say like an instant ban if caught.That might make people think twice. The only thing against a deterrent though is that it only works “if” you see caught….
    I agree, but given the current dire fiscal teetering that we find the country in, Start at £500 and if you are a footballer 250k. Put contractors in Aygo's with cameras and bonus them driving round.

    It is easy for me to spout off like this as i dont use my phone, most of the time i dont know where it is. From a time where life existed without them, i return to the left lane and mindful of speed. But the level of enforcement in so many things is woeful.Its down to the more respectful members of society to keep the fabric intact.
    Last edited by MCFastybloke; 22nd September 2023 at 07:54.

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jubal View Post
    Itís clearly a symptom of the law not being enforced.
    Sadly I believe this is the issue, as with many other offences, the police donít have the resources to deal with these matters before they become an incident.

    Better enforcement and better education for all.

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Captaincook View Post
    Sadly I believe this is the issue, as with many other offences, the police donít have the resources to deal with these matters before they become an incident.

    Better enforcement and better education for all.
    That wonít matter soon, I think itís Cornwall or Devon thatís trialling Ai cameras and they can catch seatbelt usage so the tech is coming. Itís 20 years since the phone law came in and still as someone pointed out still use them as hand held even though the car can adequately do the work. Personally I use a Plantronics headset that has full voice control so I can send emails and texts while driving totally hands free. Itís fun playing with the police when they are beside you filming you while youíre on the M1( The police have a national fleet of white DAF tractor units ) they usually get fed up after a couple of minutes and go and catch someone else.


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  46. #46
    Quote Originally Posted by MCFastybloke View Post
    I agree, but given the current dire fiscal teetering that we find the country in, Start at £500 and if you are a footballer 250k. Put contractors in Aygo's with cameras and bonus them driving round.

    It is easy for me to spout off like this as i dont use my phone, most of the time i dont know where it is. From a time where life existed without them, i return to the left lane and mindful of speed. But the level of enforcement in so many things is woeful.Its down to the more respectful members of society to keep the fabric intact.
    If you canít afford the risk of a ban, donít do it. If things were more absolute, the deterrent works, or more likely to.
    Want to carry a knife, end up stabbing/killing someone? Prison 25?years minimum, regardless of age.

  47. #47
    Quote Originally Posted by aa388 View Post
    That wonít matter soon, I think itís Cornwall or Devon thatís trialling Ai cameras and they can catch seatbelt usage so the tech is coming. Itís 20 years since the phone law came in and still as someone pointed out still use them as hand held even though the car can adequately do the work.
    https://www.cornwalllive.com/news/co...ht-new-7839303





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  48. #48
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    This would be an extremely profitable dual use for the ULEZ cameras in London. There is a serious amount of money to be made in enforcing this.

  49. #49
    Quote Originally Posted by aa388 View Post
    That wonít matter soon, I think itís Cornwall or Devon thatís trialling Ai cameras and they can catch seatbelt usage so the tech is coming. Itís 20 years since the phone law came in and still as someone pointed out still use them as hand held even though the car can adequately do the work. Personally I use a Plantronics headset that has full voice control so I can send emails and texts while driving totally hands free. Itís fun playing with the police when they are beside you filming you while youíre on the M1( The police have a national fleet of white DAF tractor units ) they usually get fed up after a couple of minutes and go and catch someone else.
    Sent from my iPhone using TZ-UK mobile app
    While doing that are you still concentrating on your driving 100% ?

  50. #50
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    Mobile usage is just one of many stupid things people do Ö drink, drugs, speeding, rage, entitlement and so on creates risk for others.

    We have even seen people on here state they will punishment pass a cyclist even though they are doing nothing illegal applying their own arbitrary standards of road use.

    I think itís more of a reflection of social attitudes and changes over the years than mean people are selfish and have little care for others.

    There is zero political appetite for clamping down on motorists so I donít expect much to be done to improve the carnage on our roads which impacts a lot of families.

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