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Phones at the wheel: beware of the dangers!

Published on 13.07.2021

According to an observational survey performed on French motorways, one in seven lorry drivers and one in twelve motorists hold their phones while driving.

The Association of French Motorway Companies (ASFA) recently published the findings of a chilling observational study performed onboard a van travelling in motorway traffic that found that around 11% of the drivers observed (799 out of 7,400 vehicles) were visibly holding a phone in their hands. Specifically, 1 in 7 lorry drivers and 1 in 12 motorists were seen using their phones.

The AFSA observed several sections of the A1, A7, A10, A13 and A77 motorways.  “The specific observation of lorry drivers on the A1 motorway showed that, as well as holding their smartphones, 13% of drivers were not even looking at the road (many of them looking at screens attached to the dashboard in particular). In other words, 1 in 4 drivers were not paying attention along this route”, the ASFA reveals.

Using a phone while driving is a major threat to safety on motorways since it reduces attention levels and increases the risk of an accident. Furthermore, ‘lack of attention’ was responsible for 14% of fatal accidents that occurred on French motorways last year.

Of course, this survey offers only a snapshot of behaviours on French roads, but it is impossible to overemphasise the fact that using a phone while driving presents just as much of a threat in Luxembourg. In 2019, 18 accidents were directly linked to using phones while driving, according to figures from the Ministry of Mobility.

The fine in the event of a proven offence is currently €135, with two points also added to the driver’s licence.

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