Having a mobile phone in hand while driving could cost you $330 and 3 demerit points. Photo Tom Huntley / The Observer
Having a mobile phone in hand while driving could cost you $330 and 3 demerit points. Photo Tom Huntley / The Observer Tom Huntley GLADV061212PHON

Do tough new phone laws play right tune to drivers?

WITH all P-plate drivers facing tough new rules about use of mobile phones from today, it will be interesting to see how effective the changes are.

>> RELATED STORY: Phone ban extended to combat rising road toll

Learners and P-platers in their first year of driving were already unable to use their phone in any way while behind the wheel, and now that has been extended to cover those on green P-plates which are in force for at least two years before drivers can get their full licence.

I'm sure we all agree that people shouldn't be talking on their phones while driving, particularly if they don't have a hands-free device, but the young drivers won't even be able to play their own tunes via their phone.

They also won't be able to use a phone for satellite navigation.

The penalties will be tough and I'm sure many will be caught out and learn an expensive lesson, but that lesson is surely preferable to them being distracted enough to be become involved in an accident.

The big question is, however, will the new rules decrease the accident rate among inexperienced drivers.

There is certainly no guarantee that will happen, but only time will tell.

And if the rules do bring about positive change and save lives, will it be just a matter of time before the restrictions are applied to all drivers, no matter their age or experience?



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