Germany study reveals UK has steepest fines for phone use and driving

Driver-phoneResearch carried out by German auto association ADAC has revealed the UK has almost the steepest fines in Europe for using mobile telephones while driving. The Allgemeiner Deutscher Automobil Club says penalties in the UK are more than double that of many other EU nations.

The maximum penalty in the UK for using a phone while driving is a £200 fine (€226 at today’s exchange rate) and six penalty points on the driver’s licence. In comparison, drivers in countries including Iceland and Croatia only have to pay on-the-spot fines of up to €100 (£88).

The Netherlands pipped the UK at the post for the highest fines, but only by €4 (£3.53), as the maximum fine there is €230 (£203). The ADAC report did not state whether drivers in the Netherlands were given additional penalties on top of fines if they were caught driving and phoning.

In spite of the high cost of using hand-held mobile phones and satnavs while driving, the UK’s motorists don’t seem to care and are still openly flouting the law. Figures for the last year available, 2016, show nearly 12,000 UK drivers were fined and given penalty points for the offence.

The figure is a little misleading as the penalties doubled in March 2017 from a £100 fine and three penalty points. It remains to be seen whether the increased penalties have had any effect.

IAM RoadSmart’s executive director is Sarah Sillars. She said the UK’s motoring community needs to learn that when driving their attention need to be on the road and not on multi-tasking.



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