I was sitting on the bus this afternoon, staring out the window as usual. On my 20 minute commute I spotted three drivers using their mobile phones, hand held, with no hands free kits. One, in a dark blue RAV 4 on Canberra Ave drifted all over the lane, and almost side swiped a car, which the driver of the Rav 4 clearly did not even notice. Then we got stuck behind a freight van being driven by another driver on the mobile.
Day in, day out, without fail, I see drivers on their mobile phones. Clearly whatever fines people are getting are not a deterrent. I don’t know what the fine is in the ACT, or if it even involves demerit points, but clearly it is not enough. I know it is $298 in NSW.
Consider tradies for example. Many of them seem to be constantly on the mobile phone while driving. They might make thousands of dollars from a phone call, so a fine of even a few hundred dollars now and them is no deterrent.
Perhaps a new approach is needed? Perhaps do the same as what is done with other car fines, for repeat offenders, the phone gets confiscated, and more importantly, the phone number. A tradie or anyone else for that matter making money off of a phone number for their business would be in serious inconvenience if their phone number is disconnected, or diverted to a message saying the number has been suspended until a specific date due to illegal use of the phone while driving. That would be a far more serious deterrent.
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So, with this in mind, how do I go about getting it enacted as law? Write to my local member? Or have people had better success with other methods?