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Driving licence checking service Licence Bureau has backed a call for a complete ban on mobile phone usage while driving.

The company said the call for action is “long overdue and enforceable”, adding it has banned phone use while driving for five years.

The company said its own no-mobile phone usage policy states ‘any employees driving on company business must not use any type of mobile phone, including hands-free, whilst driving’ adding it is also company policy that if any employee calls or receives a call from someone they believe is using a mobile phone whilst driving, that the call is ended promptly.

“It is absolutely the right thing to do – lives are being lost and it is long overdue,” said Malcolm Maycock, managing director of Licence Bureau Ltd. “Advancements in technology should enable the police to enforce a total ban, assisted by vehicle manufacturers and mobile phone providers.”

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He added: “Patrol cars already have automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) technology onboard, as well as stolen vehicle detection systems, so why not extend this capability to identify mobile phone use in a vehicle?”

Maycock welcomed mobile phone detection warning signs being introduced by several police forces across the UK as an education tool and said this approach could logically be extended to include camera back-up to identify single occupancy in vehicles and said “now is the time to act” in order to reduce traffic incidents involving mobiles; in 2017 there were 773 casualties, including 43 fatalities and 135 serious injuries in road traffic collisions where a driver using a mobile phone was a contributory factor.