A VAN driver is facing six penalty points and a £200 fine after being caught using a mobile phone at the wheel on the M42.
The motorist was pulled over by officers from Worcestershire’s Operational Policing Unit (OPU) earlier today between Junction 2 for Hopwood and Junction 1 (Bromsgrove).
Another driver was caught on the M5 between Worcester and Strensham on a mobile phone while they had a child and their pet dog in the car.
It comes as West Mercia Police has joined forces with the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC) on a crackdown on the use of handheld mobile phones at the wheel.
The campaign is due to start on Monday and run until March 29.
Distraction behind the wheel is such a significant contributory factor with regards to crashes and police forces across the UK want to tackle the issue of mobile phone use.
Motorists caught using a handheld mobile phone while driving face a £200 fine and six points on their licence.
Drivers caught twice face a lengthy ban – which could also then lead to a £1,000 fine. While new drivers – those who have passed within the last two years – face having their licence revoked if caught just once.
Over the past three years, four people have been killed in road traffic collisions where mobile phone use was recorded as a contributory factor, with an additional 14 people suffering serious injuries.
Last year 931 motorists in West Mercia were caught using their phone whilst behind the wheel.
Supt Mel Crowther for West Mercia Police said: “Driving while distracted by a mobile phone is completely unacceptable and puts everyone on the roads at risk of serious harm.
“Motorists should already be aware that using a mobile phone while driving is illegal.
“It’s concerning that we still have drivers out there who are willing to risk driving whilst distracted and West Mercia Police will be using this campaign to clamp down on this dangerous behaviour.”