NSW driver fined for touching mobile phone in cradle

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A driver has vied for the support of other road users after being slapped with a hefty fine over an act many motorists would likely be guilty of.

The NSW driver was travelling using a navigation app on his phone, which was suspended in a cradle at the time a mobile phone detection camera caught him touching it.

He has since been penalised with five demerit points and a $362 fine, but his wife is convinced the punishment was issued unfairly.

She explained in a post to social media on Monday that he only touched the phone briefly while he was checking the navigation near an exit.

“We requested to review it but they said you can’t touch the phone for any reason while driving,” her post read.

This driver was penalised for touching his phone while it was in a cradle. Picture: FacebookThis driver was penalised for touching his phone while it was in a cradle. Picture: Facebook

She claimed her husband was told the only time a driver could legally touch their phone was if they pulled over and turned off the engine or used buttons on the car’s steering wheel.

Despite multiple attempts to have the penalty overturned, she said “the answer was the same”.

The conundrum caused a stir among other drivers online, where many argued he had been served an injustice based on rules listed on the Transport NSW website.

The rules stipulate that a driver can touch their phone if it is secured in a cradle for purposes including to make or receive a phone call, for audio playing functions, or for using a driver’s aid, like a navigation app.

The man was encouraged to continue contesting the fine by dozens of people that saw his wife’s post.

“They are wrong. Take this to court. You can touch the phone for answering calls and navigation, as long as it’s fixed on a mount,” one of almost 200 responses read.

“It costs money but sometimes you have to go to the court. I have had a similar thing which looks like I have to escalate,” another person replied.

Another said they “would keep challenging this” particularly given ride share drivers had to touch their phones to co-ordinate riders.

This man also received a fine, but managed to get off paying. Picture: FacebookThis man also received a fine, but managed to get off paying. Picture: Facebook

“What about the people that don’t have fancy cars with buttons on their steering wheel.

Keep fighting this,” they wrote.

Someone else shared a similar photo from when a mobile phone detection camera captured him touching his phone while driving, claiming to have had a successful review outcome.

Others argued the man should just accept that he shouldn’t have been touching his phone, and he should suck it up and pay the fine.

“You can’t touch your phone while driving. Simple rule straight answer – DON’T TOUCH THE PHONE AT ALL,” they wrote.

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“Don’t use your f***ing phone the message is bright clear,” another said.

Transport NSW has been contacted by news.com.au for comment.

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