Drivers will receive a £60 fine and three points on their licence instead of the previous £30 fixed penalty ticket, if they are caught behind the wheel using a hand-held mobile.
This toughening up of the law is expected to significantly increase demand for Bluetooth headsets and phone cradles, according to James Burns, headset specialist at leading telecoms distributor Nimans.
He confirmed: “The Department for Transport has officially announced the increased penalties which will significantly clamp down on the use of mobile phones without a headset and cradle. To reinforce and raise awareness of the new changes the Government is running a major ad campaign on the theme of ‘Dying To Take A Call’. In addition drivers can also be prosecuted for using a hands-free mobile if they are not in proper control of their vehicle.”
Burns said the best way for motorists to stay on the right side of the law will be to invest in a Bluetooth compatible headset and phone with separate cradle.