Driver of HGV caught on mobile phone on A1(M) in County Durham

Officers from Durham Police’s road traffic team spotted the man behind the wheel of a 26-tonne lorry travelling on the A1(M) while talking on his mobile.

The striking image, which the police then shared to social media, was one that shocked members of the public – with people branding him “careless” and “stupidly dangerous”.

As well as the driver on the phone, he had one hand on the steering wheel and his attention elsewhere.

He was one of 11 drivers caught during last month’s Operation Tramline, which utilises officers in an unmarked lorry to identify driving offences from an elevated vantage point.

Over the course of four days, officers spotted drivers using their mobile phones, reading paperwork, failing to wear seatbelts, and driving under the influence.

Inspector Kev Salter, of Durham Roads and Armed Policing Unit, said: “Although the vast majority of drivers do seem to appreciate the dangers of distracted driving, there are still those that are willing to put their own lives and the lives of others at risk.

“Each of the drivers we dealt with had their own excuses for why they were doing what they were doing, but not one of them would have held up had somebody lost their life.

“It’s not an exaggeration. Whether it’s a quick phone call here or a text message there, we see the real-life consequences all too often.

“Distracted driving kills people, and we aren’t going to stop hammering that message home until every driver on our roads understands the weight of that reality.”


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