Yes Insurance

Yes Insurance

March 17, 2009 03:30 ET

Ban Young Drivers From Using Hands-Free Phones, Says Yes Insurance

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwire - March 17, 2009) - Teenagers in the UK who use hands-free mobile phones whilst driving are taking risks that equal those of drink-driving, according to motor insurer (

The insurer issued a statement today saying that the current law relating to driving and mobile phone usage should be amended to include a ban on using hands-free phones for drivers aged under 20.

"There is a growing body of research that indicates that drinking alcohol and using a hands-free mobile phone carry similar levels of risk," says Paul Purdy of

Research conducted at the Transport Research Laboratory has found that drivers talking on both hand-held and hands-free mobile phones have on average 30 per cent slower reaction times than those who have been drinking, and 50 per cent slower times than sober drivers.

Similar results were found during tests undertaken at the University of Utah, comparing use of hands-free phones and drinking at the UK limit.

Figures from the University of Sydney indicate that drivers using hands-free phones are four times more likely to crash than other drivers.

"Worldwide, road traffic accidents are the leading cause of death among 15-19 year olds. Extending the drink-driving laws to cover all mobile phone usage for younger drivers will help us to reduce this risk," he said.

Hands-free phones are not currently prohibited in the UK, but legal action can be taken against drivers who have been using them, if it is believed that this has been a contributory factor in an accident. says that most of the UK's 33 million registered drivers now have a mobile. Research studies indicate that around 24% of UK drivers occasionally use the phone whilst driving.

Editors notes.

- Details of can be found at

- is a trading name of yesinsurance Services Limited, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority

- Insurance ( policies provided online at are designed to provide competitive car insurance ( deals for drivers with cars or vans that are over 5 years old, which account for around 60% of all cars currently on the road, as well as van insurance ( policies.

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