Study shows one-in-ten Irishmen use phones when driving

DUBLIN, Aug. 5 (Xinhua) -- One-in-ten Irish drivers continue to use their mobile phones while driving, according to a new study published Tuesday.

The study carried out by Easytrip, an Irish electronic tolling services company, found that more than 10 percent of drivers continuing to put their lives and others at risk by using their hand-held phones while driving.

The study, which involved monitoring more than 1,000 vehicles during peak commute times, showed that 63 percent of those observed using their phones at the wheel were men and 37 percent were women.

"Three months on from the introduction of the new penalties for texting, and it seems that a lot of motorists are still ignoring the dangers," said Easytrip general manager Ciara O' Brien.

"Holding a mobile phone while driving, whether you’re talking or texting, increases your chance of an accident by up to four times and is lethally dangerous. That is why the new penalties are so severe," she said.

From Aug. 1, penalty points for holding a mobile phone while driving increase from 2 to 3, with a fixed-charge of 60 euros (80 U.S. dollars) that can lead to a possible 2,000 euros (2,678 U.S. dollars) fine on conviction.