Motorists are being urged to ‘drive aware’ this month and not get distracted on their journey, as the police embark on a road safety campaign.
The PSNI in Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon say inattention while in control of any vehicle can lead to a collision causing serious injury or death.
So far this year in Northern Ireland 57 people have died on the roads as a result of a road traffic collision.
Supt David Moore said, “Almost everyone has a mobile phone or device of some description that they use to communicate with others via text or social media. Absolutely nothing on your Facebook page twitter feed or Instagram account should come before your safety and the safety of others. Using a mobile phone whilst driving increases the risk of a collision by a factor of four.
“Drivers are reminded that not only are there serious risks by being distracted by these mobile devices whilst in control of a vehicle, but also there are penalties and consequences to face for breaking the law.
“This is not just about mobile phones. Many things can distract the driver. It’s wintertime. Darkness stays longer in the morning and comes earlier in the evening. It can take time for a driver to adjust. Low light conditions require more concentration from motorists, including motorcyclists. Be aware of your surroundings, approach junctions and pedestrian crossings with utmost care and attention.
“Use your mirrors to ensure there is a safe distance between you and other motorists or when you are making a manoeuvre. Don’t answer the phone. Don’t reach down to get something from the passenger foot well. Don’t get distracted.”
He added, “We want to help keep people safe. On the roads, on the footpaths, behind the wheel or behind the handlebars. Please heed our advice and don’t become a statistic.”