Mobile phone detection first on Norfolk’s roads

Norfolk County Council’s Road Safety team are trialling a new mobile phone detection system for use on the county’s roads, which is the first system of its kind to be used on UK roads.

Working in partnership with local company Westcotec, the technology will be used to identify mobile phone use from within a vehicle, picking up on what type of signal is being transmitted or received by the handset and whether it is being used via the vehicle’s Bluetooth system.

When the relevant signal is detected, indicating that a mobile phone is being used within the vehicle, the road sign is activated as the vehicle passes, giving a specific flashing visual message that will prompt a driver to stop using their phone. A facility to record specific number plates is likely to be a future development.

Margaret Dewsbury, chairman of Communities Committee, said: “Using a mobile phone whilst driving is an enormous distraction and apart from being illegal puts the lives of the driver, passengers and pedestrians at risk. We are delighted to have been able to partner with Westcotec to trial the new technology across Norfolk.”