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FTA says truck drivers must stay focused

Association calls on drivers not to be distracted by mobile phone when behind the wheel

AS 2013 Road Safety Week was launched this week, the Freight Transport Association (FTA) has supported the national campaign by voicing the importance to drivers to stay focused and not be distracted by the phone when behind the wheel.

FTA has enforced the message of this years’ Road Safety Week, which has the theme of ‘tune into’ road safety by calling on drivers to turn off their phones or to put them in the boot, and urges everyone to refuse to speak on the phone to someone who is driving.

Christopher Snelling, the FTA’s  head of urban logistics and regional policy, said: ‘The behaviour of the road user is the most important element in ensuring road safety, and it’s the thing we all have within our immediate control.

‘When travelling we all need to focus on the road and the users around us, so we can keep ourselves and others safe.’

Despite it being a decade since hand-held mobiles were banned at the wheel, figures revealed this week showed that 575,000 motorists have been prosecuted for using a handset at the wheel or being otherwise distracted while driving.

Mr Snelling added: ‘FTA members of course know that it is illegal to use a hand-held phone to text or call at the wheel, and recognize that anyone trying to multi-task when behind the wheel can be distracted.

‘However, in support of Road Safety Week we would discourage any driver from taking part in a phone conversation as it can affect their ability to control a vehicle. We believe it is imperative that all road users share the road safely – whether you are driving, cycling or walking, it is vital to focus on keeping yourself and others safe.

‘Distraction isn’t just an issue for drivers; for people on foot and cycling, being sidetracked by a mobile phone, or not being able to hear due to listening to music can be lethal. Negotiating roads needs everyone to give their full care and attention, and to share roads safely.’

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