TECH

New Drivers Caught Using Their Phones Will Now Lose Their Licence

Here's everything you need to know about the new rules.

01/03/2017 12:34 GMT | Updated 01/03/2017 15:57 GMT

New legislation to curb the use of phones at the wheel comes into force today, as the police begins a fresh crackdown on distraction driving.

It comes after 22 people were killed and 99 seriously injured in accidents where a driver was using their phone in 2015, the latest year with available figures.

If you’re caught using your phone at the wheel within two years of passing your test, you’ll have your licence revoked under the new rules.

The penalty for using a phone while driving will double to six points and a £200 fine from today (1 March).

Department for Transport

If you’re a new driver and you pick up six points, you’ll be banned and forced to resit your practical and theory exams.

More experienced drivers can be banned if they pick up 12 points in three years.

The move comes as the government launches a powerful advertising campaign about distraction driving and the police begins a seven day crackdown.

Police forces will roll out extra patrols with an “increased focus” on stopping people using their phones while driving.

In the last crackdown in January, 3,600 people were handed penalties for driving while using their phones.

Before that, nearly 8,000 drivers were caught using their phones by the police in their November crackdown. 

The law stipulates that it’s illegal to use a hand-held phone or similar device while driving, or riding a motorcycle.

The rules are the same if you’re stopped at traffic lights or queuing in traffic. 

It’s also illegal to use a hand-held phone or similar device when supervising a learner driver or rider.

In one of the new ads, a drunk man suggests swapping places with his sober girlfriend, who’s texting while driving him home. 

It ends with the message: “You wouldn’t drink and drive. Don’t text and drive.”