Driving for work? Leave your phone alone
With the penalty for using a hand-held mobile phone doubling from 1st March, the Road Safety Partnership is reminding all drivers and riders of their campaign ‘No Mobile, When Mobile’ leave your phone alone, and also reminding businesses of their responsibility for their staff, especially those who drive on business.
Driving is the most dangerous activity that most people do, and about 150 people every week are killed or seriously injured in collisions while driving or riding on the road for work purposes.
Health and Safety law applies to on road driving and the risks should be effectively managed within a health and safety system, and one such risk is staff making or receiving calls, texting or otherwise using a mobile phone while driving.
The safety and legal reasons for leaving your phone alone are obvious, but not so well known is that it is also an offence to ‘cause or permit’ a driver to use a hand-held mobile phone while driving. Employers can be held liable as well as the individual driver if they require employees to use a hand held phone while driving.
Cllr Nigel Moor Cabinet Member responsible for Road Safety, said “The county council has a clear policy about mobile phones and driving and that is; no GCC employee should use a mobile phone whilst in the driving seat of a vehicle when the engine is running. The policy covers a range of driving and safety requirements as part of our commitment to caring for our staff and showing an example to others”
Maria Boon, Head of the Road Safety Partnership, said “Using a hands-free phone while driving does not significantly reduce the risks because the problems are caused mainly by the mental distraction and divided attention of taking part in a phone conversation at the same time as driving. So, when we say “No Mobile when Mobile”, we are referring to any phone of device that will distract the driver, as distraction can be deadly.”
If you employ drivers, or if you drive as part of your work, then please ensure that you have clear policies in place to manage your occupational road risk; a generic policy is on the RSP website to download and adopt.
So let not the doubling of the penalty be the reason to increase safety; let safety itself be the aim and avoid distractions when driving by leaving your phone alone – No Mobile, When Mobile!
To find out more visit our campaign page here.