Clause 22 - Breach of requirements as to control of vehicle, mobile telephones etc.

Part of Road Safety Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 11:00 am on 27th January 2005.

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Photo of Charlotte Atkins Charlotte Atkins Assistant Whip, Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Department for Transport 11:00 am, 27th January 2005

The point is that there is no body of evidence to demonstrate that cyclists using mobile phones are creating a problem. There is a huge body of evidence to demonstrate that motorists, whatever vehicle they are driving, using mobile phones create problems and accidents. That is why the clause suggests that we should make such an offence endorseable. However, there is anecdotal comment about cyclists causing a problem because they are driving dangerously or carelessly. That may or may not be as the result of holding a mobile phone. Unfortunately, I probably have more complaints from people about cyclists going through red lights than about those using mobile phones. Careless or dangerous driving by cyclists is usually related to other offences such as jumping lights or cycling on pavements. Use of mobile phones by cyclists is not a big problem, because that would be very dangerous for the cyclist; much more so than other offences that they might commit. That is why I ask the hon. Gentleman to withdraw his amendment.