Mobile phones and hands-free driving. Do you know the law?

Once you’ve got the car you need by applying for vehicle finance through us at Albion, you’ll probably want to excitedly tell family and friends. Just don’t be so quick to grab your mobile phone while driving along. It could prove disastrous.

Of course, the vast majority of road incidents that occur owing to one or more drivers using a mobile phone while in transit do not result in fatalities. But all sorts of injuries are commonly sustained, and the emotional trauma experienced can prove long-lasting.

Using mobile phones and driving

My car was a write-off after being rammed from behind by a white van man chatting on his mobile phone while driving in excess of the speed limit on the M25, of all places,” explains Abigail in Watford. “To this day, I still don’t know how I survived. It resulted in me having to give up work, meaning that I almost lost my home. I had to rely on State Benefits to survive. Then, due to that, when I did eventually feel able to drive on Britain’s roads again, I simply couldn’t get vehicle-finance anywhere. It was only when an ex-work colleague told me about Albion Car Finance that I was able to finally purchase the car I have now, and get back out there.

It’s time to bust this particular myth

Most of us know that using a mobile phone while driving is against the law. But how many of us are aware that simply being in a stationary position in your vehicle with the engine running (while texting, chatting, picking up voicemail messages on a hand-held device) can land you in the soup, too?

Dale in Solihull (West Midlands) certainly didn’t know that. And now he’s facing a £100 fine and three penalty points on his licence.

I had no idea that I was committing an offence when chatting to my mate on my Smartphone earlier in the year, while in a traffic jam on the M42!” explains Dale, who, prior to this had never been in trouble with the police. “I mean, the roads were absolutely jammed. Some motorists were actually switching their engines off and grabbing forty winks while they waited for traffic to flow again! I’ll certainly be changing to using a hands-free mobile in the future. At least then I can chat to my mates about Aston Villa, music, and other stuff all I want, without having to worry about getting arrested, can’t I?

Not necessarily, Dale…

Why hands-free might not mean scot-free

Scot-free. According to the Oxford Dictionary, scot-free’s definition is without suffering any punishment or injury. Contrary to popular belief, chatting on a hands-free phone while driving doesn’t mean you won’t suffer any punishment or injury, as Hattie in Barrow-in-Furness (Cumbria) found out to her cost earlier in the year:

I had always assumed that chatting to friends, colleagues and clients using a hands-free mobile phone system while driving was perfectly legal,” explains Hattie. “But it’s not as simple as that. If you cause a crash due to chatting hands-free you can end up in court, and you’re employer could find themselves in trouble too if the conversation taking place at the time of the crash involved work (and you are using a company car).”

“Gabbing away to one of my favourite clients whilst zooming down the M62 last December in the run up to Christmas resulted in me losing my job. I definitely think there needs to be greater awareness of mobile and hands-free driving and the law. I mean, people don’t really know the rules when it comes to that. And these days, who hasn’t got a mobile?

We can definitely give you ‘a hand’ getting car finance it’s easier than you think!