The West

Drivers face  more double demerit fines
Drivers face more double demerit fines

Running red traffic lights and using mobile phones while driving will attract double demerit points for the first time this Easter and Anzac long weekends.

Previously, only speeding, drink driving and failing to wear seatbelts have attracted double demerits.

Currently the penalties for running a red light is $150 and three demerit points and misuse of mobile phone is $250 and three points.

Under the new regime, the points will double but fines will remain the same.

Road Safety Minister Liza Harvey today said misuse of mobile phones and ignoring red signals were linked to fatal and serious crashes and should be part of the double demerit program, now in its 13th year.

“Over the past five years road fatalities have dropped by 30 per cent, but WA unfortunately still has one of the worst road tolls in Australia,” she said.

“In 2014 we hope that measures such as these will reduce that toll.”

The addition of the new offences will be reviewed after three years.

A public awareness campaign spanning print, radio, digital and online media will be in place before the two separate holiday periods between April 17 and 21, and April 24 and 27.

The West Australian

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