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Don't let your phone drive you to distraction

Don't let your phone drive you to distraction

  • 2016-01-06

On the 10th day of Christmas . . . don't let your phone drive you to distraction"

There are plenty of things we want for Christmas - fines and demerit points don't tend to be on our lists, so remember that it is against the law to use a mobile phone in the car while you are driving.

Bay of Plenty District's Acting Road Policing Manager, Inspector Kevin Taylor said: "When it comes to cell phones; phoning a friend should be reserved for television game shows not while you’re driving.

No call is so urgent that it’s worth risking a trip to the emergency department.

Our best advice is that while you are in the car you turn your phone off.

If it can't ring, it can't distract you; and if someone wants to get hold of you urgently they will leave a message or try you again."

The rules

You cannot answer or make calls with a handheld phone while you are driving unless you are making a 111 or *555 call in a genuine emergency when it is unsafe or impractical to stop and park the vehicle.
You cannot create, send or read texts, email messages or video messages while driving.
The ban applies even if you are stationary at traffic lights, intersections or roadworks.
If you have to answer a phone you need to carefully pull over to a safe location and stop.
The penalty is an $80 fine and 20 demerit points.

There are a number of free mobile phone apps which help remove the urge to check your phone by sending your caller an automatic message letting them know you are driving and will return their call when you arrive at your destination.

This advice forms part of the 12 Crime of Christmas campaign by Bay of Plenty District Police who wish you a very merry and safe Christmas and New Year.(from scoop.co.nz)

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