Traffic Offences Penalty Charges May Increase By Half, Says Minister


Patrick McLoughlinPenalty charges for traffic offences may increase by half as  Ministers are reviewing proposals to make roads safer in the United Kingdom.

Transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin has hinted of a huge increase of  penalties for  on-wheel texting, over speeding and disregard for seat belt, increasing fines from  £60 to £90 per offence.

Also being considered is a huge fine of fixed penalties for vehicle defects and insurance offences.

Any motorist  caught texting at the wheel apart from imposed  fines of £90 may further face   three penalty points being slash from the Driving Licence .

Speaking at a road safety conference in London, Mr McLoughlin admitted: ‘On occasions in the past I’ve used my mobile phone when driving.’

But just as drink-driving had become socially unacceptable, he would not now condone it. The idea that ‘we all do it, don’t we?’ was no longer acceptable, he said.

Mr McLoughlin said that he found it ‘unbelievable’ that motorists risk  fatal accidents by texting, tweeting or using Facebook while at the wheel.

The Transport secretary pledged   that it is would be more important to  get tough on drivers who put lives at risk in order to guarantee for a safer Britain.

Mr McLoughlin said: “We want to send a clear message to dangerous drivers – if you show disregard for the safety of other road users, we will catch and punish you.”

But there are no plans to make any changes to penalties for parking offences.

Mr McLoughlin said he wanted to equate the offence of  using a hand-held mobile while driving as unacceptable as drink driving offences in the country.

It is illegal to use a hand-held phone at the wheel, other than to call the emergency services. This also applies at traffic lights and in roadworks.

More than a million motorists have been convicted of using mobile phones since it was outlawed in 2003.

Research has shown attention decreases by 79 per cent when texting or calling while driving.