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The Police Have Developed Detectors To Catch Drivers On Their Mobiles At The Wheel

03 May 2019

Police in the Hampshire and Thames Valley area are the first in the country to start using a new device designed to combat the use of mobile phones while driving. Developed by Westcotec Ltd, this new detector can determine which cars are using phones without a hands-free device. Once a driver has been detected using their mobile phone they are flashed a mobile phone sign to warn them to stop. Drivers found using their phones will not be pulled over for now, but it is hoped the new device will deter them from using their phone in future.

The device picks up phone signals, and will flash to alert people in cars who are using their phones to call, text or are using their data. However, the detector will recognise if a Bluetooth hands-free device is being used and not warn the driver. A spokesman for the Hampshire and Thames Valley forces said: "The technology can detect when Bluetooth is being used but cannot detect if a passenger is using the phone, but the sign will still be activated reminding motorists of the distraction of a mobile phone whilst driving."

The detector being unable to tell whether the driver or passenger is using the mobile has led to some people criticising the new device. But many people are also in support, especially those who have experienced the loss of relatives due to drivers on their mobile. The Police remain hopeful that this device will not only deter the use of mobiles while driving but help them to find hotspot locations people are most often on their phones.