2 June 2020

Police release footage of 'stupid' and 'dangerous' distracted driving

| Dominic Giannini
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Mobile phone user

ACT Policing is warning drivers to stay off their phones while on the road. Photo: Supplied.

Police have released footage of motorists who continue to use their phones while driving – some at speeds in excess of 80 km/h – a practice police have called “stupid” and “dangerous”.

Hundreds of Canberrans are caught using their mobile phones while driving every year, and it is the most common distracted-driving infringement notice issued by ACT Policing.

Officer in Charge of Road Policing, Detective Inspector Marcus Boorman has used body and helmet cam footage to again call on motorists to stop endangering themselves and others on Canberra roads.

“We are not releasing this video for fun, or to shame individuals,” Detective Inspector Boorman said. “We are putting it out there to show how common this dangerous, and ultimately stupid, behaviour is.”

“Every driver caught in this video was distracted by their phone, most of them were so engrossed in using it they were surprised to see a police officer on a motorcycle pull up next to them, and some didn’t even notice that until the flashing lights and siren started.

“No phone call, text message, map search, or social media update is worth the multiple risks you take when you use your phone illegally while driving.”

Distracted driving also constitutes driving with headphones on, managing passengers or pets on board, tuning a car radio, or using a GPS.

The renewed calls for drivers to put their phones down while driving forms a part of the broader ACT Road Safety Strategy, which is aiming to reach zero road deaths in the Territory.

Mobile phone user

ACT Policing are warning drivers to stay off their phones while on the road.

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@Julie Macklin
Just to give one example, what these numpties do is when the light goes green and they haven’t finished their SMS or facebook update, they drive off still looking down at their phone, and if they are turning and there happens to be pedestrians crossing the road… More than once I’ve had close shaves with idiots turning across intersections while still on their phone.

You also see it where someone is on the phone waiting to go straight and a turning vehicle next to them gets a green take off when the turning vehicle takes off. They are so engrossed in their phone they don’t realise they still have a red.

Driving needs concentration even when at lights or stuck in a traffic jam.

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