Staggering number of drivers busted using a phone
The State’s peak motoring body has slammed the actions of distracted motorists, after new data revealed tens of thousands of drivers were caught in Queensland using a phone behind the wheel.
Data from the Department of Transport and Main Roads and analysed by RACQ, revealed more than 31,000 motorists were charged with mobile offences between February 2017 and January 2019.
RACQ spokesperson Lauren Ritchie said the Brisbane police region had the most offenders, with more than 12,000 fines handed out, followed by the south east with more than 6,700.
“These statistics are shocking and sadly show that Queenslanders aren’t getting the message on how deadly this behaviour is,” Ms Ritchie said.
“If you’re distracted by a phone, you’re at least four times more likely to have a crash. There’s no excuse for this behaviour because when you’re sending a text or checking social media behind the wheel, you’re not only risking your own life but the lives of everyone else around you.”
Ms Ritchie said as part of its distraction campaign launched this week, drivers were encouraged to ‘set their phone, then leave it alone.’
“We know drivers still want to use their phone for functions like music and maps, so we’re asking motorists to take a couple of minutes before you head off to set up your phone, then switch it to ‘do not disturb’ mode and don’t touch it for the rest of the trip,” she said.
“This simple action only takes a moment but it could save a life.”
Mobile phone offences by police region between February 2017 and January 2019: