The Government has confirmed it is planning to double the penalties for those caught using a mobile phone while driving
The decision was announced in the DfT’s response to a consultation on the punishments handed out to motorists caught using a hand-held phone, meaning that those found committing the offence will be docked six points and receive a £200 fine – an increase from the existing three points and £100 fine.
The number of fines issued for motorists caught using a mobile phone illegally has plummeted by 84 per cent since 2011.
Just 16,900 drivers were handed fixed penalty notices in relation to the offence in England and Wales last year, compared with 123,100 in 2011, Home Office data shows.
The 2015 figure represents a 43 per cent decrease on the previous 12 months.
A Department for Transport spokesman told BusinessCar the new penalties will come in “as soon as possible in 2017”, but added it could be delayed as the matter needs to debated in both Houses of Parliament.
According to the Government, 94% of respondents supported an increase in the fine and 94% supported an increase in the number of points issued.