Cold Snap phone-user crackdown

POLICE have promised to crack-down on drivers using mobile phones as a two-week school holiday traffic blitz gets underway today.

Thousands of winter holiday makers will be hitting the highway this afternoon, prompting the launch of Operation Cold Snap - a state-wide traffic operation that will run until July 17.

Ipswich police Inspector Keith McDonald said the emphasis on mobile phone use was vital as distracted drivers were the cause of a large number of fatal accidents.

"Mobile phone use is prevalent in a large number of crashes where inattention is identified as the cause," Insp McDonald said.

The penalty for the offence of driving while using a mobile phone is $340 and three demerit points, however new legislation was recently introduced to penalise drivers double demerit points if they are caught commiting the offence twice within a 12-month period.

Younger motorists should be aware that in Queensland, there is a ban on all mobile phone use, including hands-free, for learner drivers under 25, P1 drivers under 25 and supervisors and passengers of these drivers.

The current road toll for Queensland is 116 - 14 more than the same time last year.



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