Mobile phone warning road signs 'a UK first'

Image      137 road users were seriously injured in accidents involving mobile phones in 2016

It then flashes a symbol of a mobile phone with a line through it to remind drivers not to touch their handsets while behind the wheel.

Diane Steiner, deputy director of public health said: "Our priority in public health is to make Norfolk a healthy and safe place to live and the new technology enables us to provide a reminder to drivers who may be using their handset whilst driving".

Although the technology can not record specific number plates, data generated from the system, including the number of activations and the times of day they take place, will be shared with Norfolk police who might then use it to set up future crackdowns.

Norfolk County Council's Road Safety team have developed the technology in partnership with vehicle sign technology local company Westcotec.

It is the first system of its kind to be used on roads in the United Kingdom and was developed by warning sign specialists Westcotec along with Norfolk County Council's road safety team.

A roadside system that detects if a mobile phone is in use in a passing vehicle is being piloted in a United Kingdom first.

People using their phones while driving will be getting warning messages if they do so in Norfolk.

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Statistics from the devices will be shared with Norfolk Police, the county council said.

In 2016, figures from the Department for Transport showed that drivers using mobile phones were involved in accidents which killed the equivalent of one person every 10 days in 2016.

"We are delighted to have been able to partner with Westcotec to trial this new technology across Norfolk".

Norfolk roads policing Inspector Jonathan Chapman said the scheme is "welcomed".

Iain Temperton, team manager for road safety at the county council, described it as "cutting-edge technology" which would be used as an "educational tool" throughout Norfolk to try and tackle the problem.

"We are glad to assist Norfolk County Council in promoting awareness about the dangers of mobile phone use in the auto".

The system will initially be used at sites in Attleborough, Holt, Norwich and Toftwood.

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