UK Drivers who use mobile phones face jail

Motorists caught using a hand-held mobile phone while driving could be jailed for two years under tough new guidelines issued today by prosecutors. Drivers who adjust sat-navs, tinker with MP3 music players such as iPods or send text messages at the wheel could also face prison sentences.

Prosecutions will be brought if by using the equipment a motorist is judged to have posed a danger to other drivers, such as causing another car to swerve.

Using a hand-held mobile while driving was outlawed in 2003, but it is estimated that half a million motorists flout the ban each day.

Existing guidelines restricted prosecutors to pursuing only a charge of careless driving, for which the maximum fine is £5,000 along with up to nine points on a motorist's license.

But under the new rules, drivers could be charged with dangerous driving, which carries a maximum sentence of two years in jail.

It is believed that by increasing the penalties, drivers will start to take the law seriously.

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