Reporting mobile use while driving

Drago

Flouncing Nobber
Location
Valhalla
I say stick it to them. It's entirely their decision to break the law, and if they don't like the licence losing jobless consequences then that's tough - they should have thought about that before driving like tools. The people they endanger often lose a lot more than mere jobs.

So keep grassing them up, and keep publishing the results here so I can revel in the schadenfreude, cos it's no less than these eejuts deserve.
 

Zanelad

Veteran
Location
Aylesbury
I say stick it to them. It's entirely their decision to break the law, and if they don't like the licence losing jobless consequences then that's tough - they should have thought about that before driving like tools. The people they endanger often lose a lot more than mere jobs.

So keep grassing them up, and keep publishing the results here so I can revel in the schadenfreude, cos it's no less than these eejuts deserve.
I agree, but then the courts let them off cos of the "hardship". See today's story about Steve Coogan amassing twelve points, for speeding I believe. He then pleads to the court about the problems he'll face making a bloody TV programme if he looses his licence. Should he not have though about that before speeding?

He reels out crap about others being affected. Tough. Others are affected by our actions. It's a shame that we only consider them as a way of helping us to evade justice.

fark 'em. If you can't do the time, don't do the crime.
 

glasgowcyclist

Charming but somewhat feckless
Location
Scotland
Good stuff IMO but other than the erratic driving how do you enforce it ?

It's not much different from enforcing drink driving laws. You can't always tell that a driver is over the limit unless some aspect of his driving alerts your suspicion and you then do a breath test.
I see this being enforced in a similar way: routine phone check for drivers after every collision. Erratic driving, where drink detected or not, routine phone check for driver.
 

Arjimlad

Tights of Cydonia
Location
South Glos
I was informed by the Police on making an enquiry, that

"Although the footage shows a driver with a phone in their hand, this does not prove the offence, when considering bringing a charge against anyone, we have to ensure they can prove the offence. In the case of the mobile phone legislation, it states that not only do they have to be holding a hand held device but we must also prove that a telecommunication also occurred, such as a telephone call, text, using maps etc. If a telecommunication cannot be proved then the legislation signposts to other offences.

As I am sure you can appreciate Dashcam footage can show a phone in someone’s hand but the majority of the time it does not show if a telecommunication has been committed, in these cases we will look to see if other offences can be brought and when the evidence is there we will continue with a prosecution for ‘Driving without Due Care and attention’, ‘not in proper control’ or ‘careless driving’ etc, which can have the same potential sanctions as the mobile phone offence.

What I can assure you, is that we have prosecuted some drivers for ‘using a handheld mobile phone/device whilst driving’ when we have the evidence to support this. There has been a recent case heard in the High Court, that is now case law, which supports the Constabulary’s stance which you may be interested in reading DPP v Barreto
."

Now, that case is interesting and I can see that the Police's approach is correct (albeit presuming that the driver will allege that no telecommunication was taking place).

Therefore we must hope for a change in the legislation. I was told that if a helmet camera report of mobile phone use wasn't sufficiently clear to support prosecution under the mobile phone laws, and in the absence of other offences such as careless driving, the registered keeper is sent a warning/advisory letter.
 

Scaleyback

Well-Known Member
Location
North Yorkshire
I was informed by the Police on making an enquiry, that

"Although the footage shows a driver with a phone in their hand, this does not prove the offence, when considering bringing a charge against anyone, we have to ensure they can prove the offence. In the case of the mobile phone legislation, it states that not only do they have to be holding a hand held device but we must also prove that a telecommunication also occurred, such as a telephone call, text, using maps etc. If a telecommunication cannot be proved then the legislation signposts to other offences.
Really, really ! I am not doubting you Arjimlad but is this really :blush: an official police stance ? So how do they prove (or maybe they cannot be bothered) that a “telecommunication also occurred” I suppose if they have the Reg plate and can ascertain who was driving then they can check their mobile phone usage ?
If they have their phone in hand and are looking at it, would they be looking at a blank screen ? If so then legislate a new offence, idiot in charge of a motor vehicle.
 
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benb

Evidence based cyclist
Location
Epsom
See today's story about Steve Coogan amassing twelve points, for speeding I believe. He then pleads to the court about the problems he'll face making a bloody TV programme if he looses his licence.
FFS. I'm pretty sure he could afford to hire a driver. I like Coogan and think he's very funny, but that's taking the piss.
 

benb

Evidence based cyclist
Location
Epsom
I was informed by the Police on making an enquiry, that

"Although the footage shows a driver with a phone in their hand, this does not prove the offence, when considering bringing a charge against anyone, we have to ensure they can prove the offence. In the case of the mobile phone legislation, it states that not only do they have to be holding a hand held device but we must also prove that a telecommunication also occurred, such as a telephone call, text, using maps etc. If a telecommunication cannot be proved then the legislation signposts to other offences.

As I am sure you can appreciate Dashcam footage can show a phone in someone’s hand but the majority of the time it does not show if a telecommunication has been committed, in these cases we will look to see if other offences can be brought and when the evidence is there we will continue with a prosecution for ‘Driving without Due Care and attention’, ‘not in proper control’ or ‘careless driving’ etc, which can have the same potential sanctions as the mobile phone offence.

What I can assure you, is that we have prosecuted some drivers for ‘using a handheld mobile phone/device whilst driving’ when we have the evidence to support this. There has been a recent case heard in the High Court, that is now case law, which supports the Constabulary’s stance which you may be interested in reading DPP v Barreto
."

Now, that case is interesting and I can see that the Police's approach is correct (albeit presuming that the driver will allege that no telecommunication was taking place).

Therefore we must hope for a change in the legislation. I was told that if a helmet camera report of mobile phone use wasn't sufficiently clear to support prosecution under the mobile phone laws, and in the absence of other offences such as careless driving, the registered keeper is sent a warning/advisory letter.
They are wilfully misinterpreting the legislation. Lazy policing.
The legislation states that the offence is committed if you are "using" a mobile phone or other "hand-held device that performs an interactive communication function by transmitting and receiving data" [excludes 2-way radios]

What constitutes "use" is not defined in the legislation, and is up to the prosecution to make the case for, but there are plenty of cases where people have been prosecuted simply for holding a phone, so at least some magistrates have concluded that the act of holding it constitutes use.

From the link above:
The particular use to which the mobile phone must be put is not defined as an element of the offence. The prosecution must merely prove that the phone or the other device was hand-held by the person at some point during its use at a time when the person was driving a vehicle on a road.
 

Arjimlad

Tights of Cydonia
Location
South Glos
They are wilfully misinterpreting the legislation. Lazy policing.
The legislation states that the offence is committed if you are "using" a mobile phone or other "hand-held device that performs an interactive communication function by transmitting and receiving data" [excludes 2-way radios]

What constitutes "use" is not defined in the legislation, and is up to the prosecution to make the case for, but there are plenty of cases where people have been prosecuted simply for holding a phone, so at least some magistrates have concluded that the act of holding it constitutes use.

From the link above:
Sadly, the Barreto case has put a stop to that interpretation.

http://www.counsel.direct/news/dpp-barreto-2019-ewhc
 

Arjimlad

Tights of Cydonia
Location
South Glos
Really, really ! I am not doubting you Arjimlad but is this really :blush: an official police stance ? So how do they prove (or maybe they cannot be bothered) that a “telecommunication also occurred” I suppose if they have the Reg plate and can ascertain who was driving then they can check their mobile phone usage ?
If they have their phone in hand and are looking at it, would they be looking at a blank screen ? Is so then legislate a new offence, idiot in charge of a motor vehicle.
I agree it is useless, and an amendment of the legislation is required. The Met appear to take a more bullish view, sending out 6 points and £200 fine fixed penalty notices which the driver can dispute if they feel lucky.. at which point the CPS could seek disclosure of mobile phone records.
 

glasgowcyclist

Charming but somewhat feckless
Location
Scotland
FFS. I'm pretty sure he could afford to hire a driver. I like Coogan and think he's very funny, but that's taking the piss.
He claimed that his character would still need to be able to drive as that was the basis for the programme being shot; a travelogue. He claimed exceptional hardship for the other 15 - 20 professionals who were booked for the show and who'd have difficulty finding another job if his show was cancelled.

Fine, defer his sentence of a 6-month disqualification until his recording has finished.

From The Independent:
Coogan said: “The whole nature of the series is that it is a travelogue and it’s an artistic thing that he drives and that defines his character. You couldn’t put him on a train because that not who he is – it’s part of his character that he drives."


The comedian said the camera shots could not be faked because he has to be seen driving the vehicle himself.
 

KneesUp

Veteran
For info

BBC News - Hands-free phone ban for drivers 'should be considered'
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-49320473
I'm not too sure about this really. Our car has what we call a 'huft' fitted (because it's referred to as the HFT - hands free telephone - in the manual and the kid wanted to read the manual, and here we are years later still calling it the huft) We don't use it much, but it's very useful and no more distracting than talking to a passenger - you just press a button on the steering wheel and say 'Call Mrs Knees' and it does, and her lovely tones come drifting through the speakers, more melodious than any music you've heard or dreamt of, asking what I want now. Neither of us make outgoing calls much though, it's generally used for incoming calls, and even then not very often. I guess the trick is to make sure the caller knows you are driving, so you might not reply briefly if, say, you are at a busy junction or something. I guess most people give too much attention to the call, and this is why we can't have nice things.
 

Arjimlad

Tights of Cydonia
Location
South Glos
He claimed that his character would still need to be able to drive as that was the basis for the programme being shot; a travelogue. He claimed exceptional hardship for the other 15 - 20 professionals who were booked for the show and who'd have difficulty finding another job if his show was cancelled.

Fine, defer his sentence of a 6-month disqualification until his recording has finished.

From The Independent:
Coogan said: “The whole nature of the series is that it is a travelogue and it’s an artistic thing that he drives and that defines his character. You couldn’t put him on a train because that not who he is – it’s part of his character that he drives."


The comedian said the camera shots could not be faked because he has to be seen driving the vehicle himself.
A man of his resources could have rented a chauffeur, and as for Alan Partridge, have they not heard of a green screen ?
 
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Scaleyback

Well-Known Member
Location
North Yorkshire
Sadly, the Barreto case has put a stop to that interpretation.

http://www.counsel.direct/news/dpp-barreto-2019-ewhc
This seems like all the idiots are not charging around in cars whilst 'ebaying' etc. Some of the idiots are 'out there' drafting legislation.
I simply cannot believe that when drafting this law they decided to exclude using the mobile to make video. Of course they didn't, they
simply overlooked this use of the device. As you so rightly say different police forces are going to interpret the legislation . . . err differently.
Who coined the phrase "the law is an ass" ?
 

Scaleyback

Well-Known Member
Location
North Yorkshire
Probably because when the law as draughted video recording phones weren't a thing.
Hmm ? Seems first laws relating to driving while using mobile or handheld devices came out in 2003. Much changed since of course. Phones able to take videos have also been around since about that time.
 
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