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Mobile phones could be blocked for use in cars

The mobile phone today is a “must have” item and even in the smallest of towns or villages, it is normal to see a person using one. It was, however, not always this way because it was for use in motor vehicles that he early mobile was first envisaged using radio telephony developed during and shortly after World War2, not the modern cellular network of today.

Now of course, this has brought 21st century problems, because when we wish to contact someone, for whatever reason, trivial or important, we simply dial a number, or use a speed dial technique. What happens though if that person happens to be driving a car and as we all know, it is human nature to answer the summons! The tragic result could be that the driver fiddling with the hand held phone has an accident, which in some tragic cases has been known to cause deaths.

Today modern cars are fitted with Bluetooth “hands free” technology which allows a conversation to take place without touching the phone, but there are millions of vehicles of all descriptions without this technology. It is illegal to use a hand held phone in a vehicle if driving and the penalties can be severe, government has already cracked down on mobile phone use in cars by introducing tougher penalties for anyone who uses their phone behind the wheel. If caught and convicted it can mean automatic bans for new drivers, a fine of £200 and six penalty points, or if a death occurs then a driver can be jailed for life.

A campaign is growing to prevent the use of a mobile phone in a moving car and the Department for Transport is considering new technology that will block a mobile signal in a moving vehicle, it will also prevent users from being able to retrieve texts and emails.

What is concerning though is that the mobile is such a vital piece of equipment to all of us now. For example, we presume that any passengers will also be prevented from using their mobiles. Is this the right way to go? Often a passenger will contact a person or business to inform arrival time, or where to meet, running late because of traffic problems, also what would happen in an emergency?

Surely the situation has to be looked at very carefully before draconian measure are taken, penalising the many for the stupid actions of a few thoughtless drivers is not necessarily the correct approach.

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