Mobile phone detection figures for Tyrone 'shock' MLA

Rosemary Barton MLA calls for public to help end dangerous poaching
Rosemary Barton MLA calls for public to help end dangerous poaching

A politician has expressed shock at the high number of drivers caught on mobile phone in Tyrone and Fermanagh.

Local Ulster Unionist MLA Rosemary Barton said more needs to be done to educate motorists of the dangers.

Statistics show that of the 2,872 drivers successfully prosecuted in Northern Ireland for using mobile phones in the past three years, 896 were in Tyrone and Fermanagh.

Mrs Barton said: “Even though we have seen numerous campaigns aimed at tackling the issue of mobile phones being used at the wheel, the fact that over 30% of these convictions have taken place in Fermanagh and Tyrone indicates that there are a large proportion of people in counties still intent on ignoring this message because they believe ‘it won’t happen to them’.

"In fact these statistics also indicate that those using such a device in Fermanagh and Tyrone have a higher risk of being caught.

“More needs to be done to educate every section of our community on the dangers of using your mobile phone whilst driving. It is one of the biggest distractions as a driver and I would hope people begin to consider the consequences of using these devices at the wheel.

" Unfortunately using a mobile phone without a hands free device has been proven to lead to fatalities when driving. I would therefore appeal to anyone using a mobile phone and other hand held devices when driving to think again and wait to the end of your journey to return the unanswered call.”