Drivers to be fined $1000 in clampdown on mobile phone use behind the wheel

If passed, the law would see Queensland enforce the toughest driving laws in the country. Source: Getty.

Nowadays it’s rare for anyone to go anywhere without their mobile glued to their hand, however drivers who are caught flaunting the law and using their phones behind the wheel could now be slapped with a huge $1,000 fine.

The proposed new on-the-spot fine is being touted by Queensland Transport Minister Mark Bailey, following a deadly period on the state’s roads, which has seen more than 40 people killed in just two months, reports the Courier Mail.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk supports the hardline move and told the Courier Mail: “Too many Queenslanders continue to die needlessly on our roads from senseless distraction.

“Looking at your phone while driving or sending a quick text behind the wheel is something sadly the majority of drivers will own up to having done. Everyone knows it’s so dangerous but it’s too easy for people to do it.”

The move comes after a string of tragic road deaths in the state in recent months, including an incident in May which saw one 14-year-old boy killed after a stolen car carrying six youngsters lost control in Kallangur, north of Brisbane. Another devastating incident saw mother Charmaine Harris McLeod die alongside her four young children in a fiery smash near Kingaroy last month.

Following the death of Queensland girl Shania McNeill in Berkshire Park, NSW, radio personality Ray Hadley issued a plea for for drivers to be stripped of their licences if they are caught using their mobile phone behind the wheel.

McNeill, who died killed in a collision in April, was captured on camera driving erratically before crashing head on into an oncoming vehicle, while two passengers survived the crash. Multiple reports since have suggested that the 21-year-old had been “playing chicken” when the incident took place.

Following the incident, shock jock Hadley said: “Young people seemingly want to put everything online … but it does get to the stage where you think you have lost a friend in an incident, do you really need to take a photo of yourself in a neck brace in hospital and depict that as some sort of news?”

It has been reported that the new initiative may come into effect before Christmas, in a bid to reduce the road toll over the festive period.

What are your thoughts on this story? Do you think the fine for using your phone behind the wheel should be increased?

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