Watch: Lorry driver caught on motorway holding two phones
A lorry driver has been caught on camera by police on a motorway while holding two mobile phones – one to each ear.
The “appalling” offence took place on the M4 motorway as the driver was travelling in a 44-tonne articulated lorry.
He was filmed by police as part of Operation Tramline.
Officers from Avon and Somerset Police used a large goods vehicle (LGV) to gain an elevated view of the lorry driver’s actions.
In the video clip, the officers pull alongside the driver, who quickly removes the phones from his ears to put both hands back on the steering wheel.
The offending vehicle was then reported to a supporting policing unit which intercepted it, indicated for it to pull over and dealt with offences.
Chief Inspector Jason Shears, roads policing lead for Avon and Somerset Police, said: "Driving whilst distracted is every bit as unacceptable as drink driving and just as likely to be fatal.
"Research has shown that drivers using a phone – handheld or hands free – are four times more likely to be involved in a collision and their driving is also impaired to a degree similar to that of a drink driver.
"Safety on the roads of Avon and Somerset is our road policing unit’s absolute priority and we will not hesitate to use every option open to us, including the deployment of a range of unmarked vehicles, to tackle dangerous and anti-social driving habits."
The force also caught a vehicle weighing 3.5 tonnes illegally towing a trailer in the third lane of the M5 motorway at excessive speed.
Another motorist on the M4 was caught holding a mobile phone – with their right little finger touching the bottom of the steering wheel and their other hand nowhere near the wheel.
Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Commissioner Sue Mountstevens said: "I am fully supportive of Op Tramline and the targeting of offenders whose actions are putting lives at risk.
"The offences captured by Avon and Somerset Police’s Road Policing Unit are appalling, unacceptable and dangerous.
"The minority who use mobile phones and tablets or become distracted by sat-navs are not just putting themselves in danger but others around them.
"We all know the risks when looking away from the road to change music or to check text messages, and the solution is simple; do not take the risk and instead keep focused.
"If you are caught looking at your phone or tablet while driving, you will be prosecuted."
Beverley Hannah, Highways England’s South West safety co-ordinator, said: "The vast majority of drivers who use our roads every day behave responsibly behind the wheel, but there are some who are putting themselves and others at risk by simply ignoring the law.
"That is why we introduced the three super cabs, and we are working with our police partners across the country to tackle dangerous driving such as illegally using mobile phones, or not wearing seatbelts.
"We hope this operation will encourage all motorists to think about their driving."
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