More than 23,000 infractions for using a mobile phone while driving were recorded last year, revealed the National Road Safety Authority, which starts a monitoring campaign with the GNR and PSP on Tuesday 23rd February.
The road safety campaign “Phone Off – Don’t Use Your Cell Phone Driving”, which involves ANSR, GNR and PSP, will run until March 1 and aims to alert drivers to the negative consequences, and even fatalities, from the improper use of the mobile phone while driving.
According to the ANSR, 23,038 violations of this kind were recorded in 2020, which corresponds to an average of 63 per day.
In a joint statement, ANSR, GNR and PSP point out that several scientific studies “equate the improper use of the mobile phone with driving under the influence of alcohol”, with “very similar” consequences in attention and in the ability to react.
To reduce this type of behavior, the amendments to the Highway Code in effect since the 8th of January doubled the amounts of the fines, increasing the amounts to between 250 euros and 1,250 euros, with the withdrawal of three points on the driving license, instead of the previous two points.
The campaign, inserted in the National Inspection Plan of 2021, will include actions to raise awareness of ANSR, inspection operations by GNR and PSP, with special focus on roads and accesses with high road flow, to help reduce the risk of accidents and promote the adoption of safer behavior by drivers.
Awareness-raising actions will take place simultaneously with inspection operations, in different locations: February 23rd in the Expo Zone (Lisbon), day February 24th on the National Road EN125 in Vendas Novas, February 25th on the Estrada dos Ciprestes, in Setúbal, and February 26th at Rotunda A8, exit Óbidos.
In a statement, ANSR, GNR and PSP stressed the danger of using a mobile phone while driving and called for this behavior to be avoided.
“Using a mobile phone while driving increases the risk of a car accident four times”.
They also emphasise that the use of electronic devices while driving makes attention to signs difficult and leads to the disregard of the rules of passage, particularly in relation to pedestrians.
The National Inspection Plan foresees the realisation of awareness campaigns simultaneously with inspection operations “in places where infractions regularly occur that represent an increased risk for the occurrence of accidents”, state the authorities.
Original article available in Portuguese at http://postal.pt/