Mobile phones will kill you…

...But only if you're driving, or fail to follow the Green Cross Code

Okay, the most recent government report says that, yes, mobiles can kill you. But it's not the actual mobiles this time (would the government accept £23 billion in licence fees if they weren't safe?), it's their use by us foolish humans.

Apparently, driving while using a mobile phone makes you four times more likely to have an accident - and this applies to hands-free sets too. It's not actually using the phone that causes the problems but rather the loss of concentration (all those school teachers were right: "Can you talk and hear, boy?" Hint: Yes was the wrong answer).

Sadly, this very point was proved just last week when world-record beater and top bicycle designer Bruce Bursford was killed by a lorry driver whose mobile had started ringing. The driver didn't answer the phone but was distracted and ploughed Bursford who was going 25mph on the side of the A47.

Police do have the power to charge people with the offence of driving without proper control of the vehicle, without due care and attention or dangerously, but consumer groups are stepping up a campaign to demonise mobile phone use while driving in the same way that drinking and driving has been made unacceptable.

As for the safety of mobiles themselves - at the moment they are deemed completely safe. The argy bargy about hands-free sets amplifying radiation has still to be sorted out. ®

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