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Drivers caught in phone crackdown

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In one day, police caught 180 motorists using their mobile phones while driving during a Scotland-wide crackdown.

This figure was "disappointing" for police as it was an increase on the 171 stopped in the same operation last year. It also highlighted the importance for drivers to have adequate car insurance.

Motorists in the Strathclyde area committed the most offences, with 103 people being caught, while 39 were stopped in the Lothian and Borders area.

Police hope the initiative has raised awareness among people as driving while using a mobile phone can diminish concentration and impair reaction times, even when using a hands-free device.

Among those stopped was a lorry driver who was caught reading a text while driving through a city centre.

The initiative, led by the Association of Chief Police Officers in Scotland, ran over a 24-hour period and involved all eight of the country's police forces.

Chief Superintendent Charlie Common, of Lothian and Borders Police, said: "The number of motorists who continue to use their mobile phone whilst driving is extremely disappointing.

"With evidence that using a phone distracts the driver and reduces their control of the vehicle, these results could have had serious consequences.

"Knowing first-hand the devastation which road traffic accidents have on families, we are committed to stopping those motorists who continue to ignore the safety warnings and risk their life and the lives of others.

"My message is clear; there is no phone call that is worth risking a life for."

© Press Association 2010