Any driver caught using a handheld device when behind the wheel must take responsibility for their actions. However, they may not be the only one at fault.
Employers need to remember that it is an offence to cause or permit someone to use a handheld device whilst driving.
Therefore, by creating an environment where drivers are expected to use their driving time as an opportunity to make calls, or if the employer regularly contacts their employee at a time that they know they will be driving, then the company may well find themselves being charged under the same law.
The law does not prohibit the employer issuing a phone to their mobile workforce, and a driving caught flouting the law would not necessarily mean that the employer was also liable. However, the company may be at fault if it is found that they did not adequately forbid their employees from using handheld devices behind the wheel.
Communication, documentation and enforcement are therefore a critical component of any company’s business fleet and employment policies.