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'Do not disturb while driving' on iPhones thanks to new update

New 'do not disturb while driving' feature is to be included in the next iPhone update software, the iOS 11.

Due later this year, the function is designed to prevent distractions when driving after the new higher penalties for mobile phone use were introduced.

When activated, the software blocks calls, texts and social media notifications when it senses the user is driving.

An automated text response can be sent by the user to notify the person trying to contact them that they are currently driving and unable to talk.

Nicola Mepstead, personal injury solicitor at PotterReesDolan, said:

Despite higher penalties for those who are caught using their phone while driving, there still seems to be far too many people who do just that.

We often see the tragic results of drivers being distracted, even if only for a moment, so hopefully upgrades such as this will help it become more difficult and socially unacceptable for people to be distracted by their phones while they should be paying attention to what is going on around them while they are driving.

The new software will also make it impossible for the user to access the phone homescreen when driving to open apps.

If the user is connected to their car via Bluetooth, the new feature will assume the user is driving and will use the car's WiFi antenna to sense when the car is moving at speed.

There is also a feature for the user to disable the feature by overriding the software marking themselves as 'not driving' through the power button.

The announcement from Apple was welcomed by Brake and the RAC who is encouraging motorists to take a personal pledge not to use their mobile phones when driving with their #BePhoneSmart campaign.

Nicola Mepstead specialises in serious personal injury claims with Potter Rees Dolan. Should you have any queries about the issues raised in this article and wish to speak with Nicola or any other member of the team, please contact 0800 027 2557.

Check out the infographic below highlighting the other dangers drivers can cause when on the roads.