Texting and driving rules coming into effect

Drivers in Victoria will pay to bear in mind the new rules coming into play this month and may want to put their phones down when in the driver's seat.

The temptation to send a text while driving can be too strong for some to resist and from November 25, those people will face a $433 fine and lose four demerit points, which is one third of the threshold required to lose your licence.

Calling, texting or looking at a mobile phone when you're in the driver's seat is dangerous and can kill. It is not safe to take your eyes off the road, even for a second or two.

The new rules coming in will be targeted at younger drivers and those on their red and green P-plates will face a total cellphone ban.

Minister for Roads Terry Mulder said the ban aims to prevent young people from picking up the habit, as well as encouraging those who do it now, to stop.

"We want to see using mobiles while driving become as unacceptable as drink driving now is," he said.

If you are an Australian fleet manager, now could be the perfect time to ensure your employees are aware of this rule, and the dangers of distracted driving.

Driver distraction has been cited as the cause of roughly 32 per cent of all accidents,  according to the Western Australian Office of Road Safety.

Between 15 to 20 per cent of those crashes involved people looking at technology.

Mobile phone use has been linked to driver impairment, and can result in longer reaction times and cause people to miss traffic signals or squeeze into gaps that are too small.

Multitasking like this can make you more stressed out and cause poor decision making, and drivers may not have a good awareness of what is happening on the road.

To encourage driver safety as part of good fleet management, make sure drivers are aware of the risks associated with mobile phone use in the driver's seat.