Wellington police are disappointed in the results from a cellphone checkpoint this week which saw 25 people caught in just over an hour.
More than 20 distracted drivers have been caught using their cellphones behind the wheel during an hour-long crackdown on bad driving behaviour.
The Wellington District road policing team, which ran the Monday night cellphone checkpoint on State Highway 1 in Pukerua Bay, said they were “disappointed” with the results.
“Using a cellphone while driving increases your risk of crashing, yet drivers continue to take their eyes off the road to use their cellphones, putting themselves and others at risk,” Sergeant Laurence Vautier said.
In just over an hour 25 drivers were caught using cellphones while driving, bringing an instant fine of $80 and 20 demerit points.
* Calls to penalise mobile phone drivers harder
* Even hands-free mobiles are dangerous
* Distracted drivers the most dangerous on roads
* Nelson police targeting cellphone use in cars
Vautier also urged passengers to hold drivers accountable if they were behaving in an unsafe way.
“If you’re in a car with a driver who is using their phone don’t be afraid to speak up … Don’t let them put your life at risk for the sake of a phone call – it’s not worth it.”
From February 18, Wellington Police said they would run a four-day campaign focused on distracted drivers across the district.
“We want Wellington to be a safe place for everyone,” Vautier said.
Police figures show that, from January 2010 to June 2017, 134,908 people were pulled over for mobile phone offences. Fines for offences totalled $10,624,103.
WHAT’S LEGAL WHILE DRIVING
LEGAL: Eating, drinking (non-alcoholic), using phone as GPS, changing music on phone, changing music on stereo, make-up, reading.
NOT LEGAL: Texting, talking on cell phone.
* Police say all of the above cause drivers to be distracted and none are recommended