Following a two-month-long operation, 1,500 motorists in the Brussels suburb of Hal-Vilvoorde had their driving licences revoked for using their mobile phones while driving.
The operation, which ran from 1 May to 30 June, resulted in the immediate suspension of all driver's licences of those caught using their mobile phones while driving in Hal-Vilvoorde.
The Prosecutor's Office in Brussels told Belga News Agency on Tuesday that "the figure of 1,500 is very high, given that driving licences were only withdrawn from people who were actually driving."
Those who were apprehended were forced to abandon their vehicles and will appear before a police court in the coming months.
Their potential punishment? Fines ranging from €240 to €4,000 euros, with their licence being revoked for up to 5 years.
Why crackdown on this?
A Prosecutor's Office spokesperson also told Belga News Agency that "the use of mobile phones while driving has increased considerably in recent years." This is supported by a study conducted by the Vias institute in October 2021, which found that more than 1 in 4 Belgians use their mobile phones whilst driving.
The institute had also released a study indicating that cell phone use while driving was responsible for 8% of fatal accidents in Belgium.