New fine for drivers who use mobiles not enough – brother of man killed
Darren Martin, whose brother Lee was killed by a van driver using a mobile phone, says proposed £200 fine no deterrent
Lee Martin was cycling on the A31 in Hampshire when Christopher Gard collided with him at 65mph.
Saturday 17 September 2016 11.00 BST
The brother of a man killed by a van driver using a mobile phone has said proposals to double the fine for using a device behind the wheel are not high enough.
Darrell Martin said police told him there was 90 seconds of clear road when Christopher Gard, who had at least six previous convictions for using a phone at the wheel, could have seen his brother Lee, but failed to do so. He collided with the cyclist at 65mph on 12 August last year.
Gard, of Alton, Hampshire, pleaded guilty to causing the death by dangerous driving of 48-year-old Martin, who was taking part in a time trial event with the North Hampshire Road Club on the A31 near Bentley.
The 30-year-old was sentenced to nine years in prison at Winchester crown court and was banned from driving for 14 and a half years.
Darrell Martin said the proposals set to be announced – increasing the punishment to six points on the licence and doubling the fine to £200 – were not acceptable.
“I do wonder who they are aiming the £200 fine at. Whoever is driving a car around £200 is affordable, it can just be written off as another driving cost,” he told BBC Breakfast. “£200 is not a deterrent. For most people it is just a minor inconvenience.”