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Motorists who drive while using handheld mobile devices will face double the penalty under new legislation.
The new legislation means that anyone who is caught driving while using a handheld mobile device will receive six penalty points and a £200 fine. Currently, the penalty is three penalty points and a £100 fine.
It also means offending drivers will no longer be offered the opportunity to complete the National Driver Offender Retraining Scheme (NDORS) training course as an alternative to receiving points on their license.
However, the biggest impact of the new legislation will be felt among Cheshire’s newest motorists, as young drivers and those who have passed their tests within the past two years are now at risk of having their driving license revoked following their first offence.
Inspector Steve Griffiths, from the Cheshire’s Roads Policing Team, said: “As a senior investigator, I have dealt with many serious and fatal collisions, and in recent years I’ve found that increasingly more of these incidents have involved mobile phones.
“Motorists are four times more likely to crash if using a mobile phone while driving. Using a handheld mobile device can make drivers less aware of what is happening on the road – they could fail to see road signs, react more slowly and take longer to brake.
“It is vital that we educate motorists on the dangers of driving while using a handheld mobile device, and the impact this new legislation will have on those who continue to flout the law.”