Bedford driver pays penalty for NOT using his phone
A bemused driver says he has been unfairly punished under the updated mobile phone law.
Tony Hendrix, 44, from Bedford, received an on-the-spot six penalty points and a £200 fine after being spotted by traffic officers – but is livid over the circumstances.
Tony was driving in Luton’s Bury Park near Nadeem Plaza at about 3.30pm on Wednesday, March 1 – the day the increased penalty for using a phone behind the wheel came into force.
Tony claims that he was removing his mobile device from a trouser pocket because it was jutting uncomfortably into his leg.
Of his fixed penalty notice, he raged: “I’ve been given six points and a £200 fine and I wasn’t even using the phone.
“They said it doesn’t matter, if it is in my hand I could be looking at a picture or tempted to make a call.
“I know it’s a new law but I thought it must be a prank, I was fuming.
“The phone was in my pocket, but the case was undone and digging in my side.
“I pulled it out had it in my hand to close the flap and leant over to put it in my glove box.
“It must have only been 20 seconds in all. I was only moving it from A to B.
“The police came out of a side road in a patrol car and pulled me over. I think there must have been an unmarked car further back up the road.
“It’s the most expensive 20 seconds of my life, my insurance is also going to go up now, I’m considering appealing it. They had no sympathy for the circumstance.”
Sergeant Ian Manley, of Beds Road Policing Unit, said: “If you use a mobile phone whilst driving you significantly increase your chances of being involved in a serious, even fatal collision.
“We need to educate the public that this behaviour is completely unacceptable.”