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Police nab drivers on the phone in roads blitz

Police have conducted a one day blitz on mobile phone use on the drivers.
Police have conducted a one day blitz on mobile phone use on the drivers.

POLICE have caught nearly 700 motorists illegally using handheld mobile phones, and nearly 400 motorists speeding in school zones, in a 24-hour crackdown on traffic offences.

On Wednesday, officers across the state conducted Operation Compliance 1 - a day-long, state-wide, traffic enforcement operation aimed at getting dangerous drivers off NSW roads.

Police targeted motorists using mobile phones, speeding in school zones and not stopping at children's crossings during the operation.

A total of 1158 motorists were caught committing driving offences, more than half of them for illegal mobile phone use.

Key results from the operation were:
• 688 motorists caught using handheld mobile devices while driving;
• 391 motorists booked for speeding in school zones;
• 79 motorists booked for failing to stop at children's crossings.

Operations Commander of the Traffic and Highway Patrol, Superintendent Stuart Smith, said police continue to be frustrated by the small percentage of motorists who continue to risk their own lives, and the lives of others, by using a handheld phone while driving.

"Using a mobile handset while in control of a vehicle is not only illegal, it is highly irresponsible and very dangerous," Supt Smith said.

Laws regarding in-vehicle mobile phone use

Laws regarding in-vehicle mobile phone were amended on November 1 last year.

The new laws make it clear that motorists can only use a mobile phone while driving if the phone:

  • Is secured in a mounting fixed to the vehicle, or;
  • Can be operated by the driver without touching any part of the phone - for example, through the use of Bluetooth technology.

Provided the phone is mounted in a commercially-designed and manufactured cradle, fully licensed drivers can press buttons on the phone for the purpose of:

  • Making a call;
  • Playing music, or;
  • Using GPS.

Texting remains illegal while the phone is mounted in a cradle. . 

Topics:  mobile phones, nsw police


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