Wednesday, 26 September, 2018

New weapon against drivers using mobile phones launched in Norfolk

Katie Ramirez | 10 July, 2018, 20:10

New roadside technology is being introduced to deter motorists from using mobile phones at the wheel, it will be announced today.

Officials have worked with Dereham company Westcotec to develop the system which will flash a warning signal to drivers, similar to those for speeding, if a phone is being used in the vehicle.

The signs have been set up in four locations around Norfolk and will be moved to new sites in a month.

British road safety authorities are reportedly testing a roadside system for detecting phone use in cars.

Although the technology can not record specific number plates, data generated from the system, including the number of activations and the times of day they take place, will be shared with Norfolk police who might then use it to set up future crackdowns.

The UK's first road signs which will electronically detect and warn drivers who are using mobile phones have been introduced.

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Officials admit that it can not detect whether a driver or their passenger is using a phone and the warning sign may therefore flash even if no offence is being committed.

"Whilst this is still not a ideal science, the new generation of sign is significantly more accurate and reliable than the first".

"Hopefully, as time goes on it will become as socially unacceptable as drink driving".

Insp Jonathan Chapman, of Norfolk Roads Policing unit, said: "Any scheme which prevents this kind of behaviour is welcomed".

Mobile phone detection sign in operation on Holt Road, Norwich.

It can't tell whether the driver or a passenger is using the phone, but authorities hope it will give drivers a reminder of safety concerns.

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