Safety campaign targets driver distraction

Press Release | 30 October 2019

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 The City of Stonnington is partnering with Prahran Highway Patrol for a three-week campaign to educate motorists about the dangers of mobile phone use while driving.

The Heads Up, Phones Down campaign has seen Prahran Highway Patrol targeting driver mobile phone use at locations across Stonnington.  Those caught are issued an infringement and provided with information explaining the facts about driving distracted.

During the first two weeks of the campaign 100 drivers have been caught using their phones.

Prahran Highway Patrol’s Acting Sergeant Justin Keily said police continue to be disappointed at the number of drivers who use their mobile phone while driving.

“During the Heads Up, Phones Down campaign approximately one third of the drivers found using their phone have been issued with the same infringement previously.”

Two of the drivers caught have now been issued their fifth infringement for using a mobile phone.

This Heads Up, Phones Down campaign delivers on Council’s commitment to road safety education, a key priority in the City of Stonnington’s ‘Towards Zero’ Road Safety Strategy.

City of Stonnington Mayor Cr Steve Stefanopoulos said Council is proud to support a campaign that aims to improve driver behaviour and road safety.

“The Heads Up, Phones Down campaign delivers an important message about the facts of driving distracted, and how to stay safe,” Cr Stefanopoulos said.

“By making very simple changes, we can all do our bit to help improve safety on our roads.” 


FACTS ABOUT DISTRACTED DRIVERS

  1. Around 1 in 4 collisions are caused by distracted drivers.
  2. Using a mobile phone when behind the wheel is like driving blind.
  3. If you are driving at 100km an hour and are distracted for 2 seconds, it is the equivalent to driving blind for over 55 metres.
  4. You're 10 times more likely to crash if texting, browsing or emailing while driving.
  5. People using a mobile phone while driving are four times more likely to have a serious crash requiring hospital attendance.

TIPS FOR STAYING SAFE

  1. Install the 'do not disturb' function on your phone.
  2. Put your phone out of reach such as in the glovebox or car boot.
  3. Turn your phone to silent, or turn it off completely when driving.
  4. As a passenger, speak up and encourage others to be safe.

Mobile phone use is currently the biggest driver distraction issue.

Use your mobile phone while driving and risk a $496 fine and 4 demerit points.

Taking that call or sending that text is just not worth losing your life, or taking someone else's.

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