Dutch test cameras to catch texting drivers

Texting drivers, be aware. Smart cameras are watching you.

Dutch police are cracking down on distracted drivers.

They’re testing a camera which can identify when a motorist is driving with a mobile phone in their hand – and then fine them.

The software comes from Australian company ‘One Task’, where Alex McCredie is the director.


"The camera takes images of every vehicle that passes and then the computer analyses those images to work out which one is a driver holding the phone. And if the driver is not holding the phone, it gets deleted immediately. And if the driver is holding the phone or interacting with their phone, then it's sent through to the police (in the Netherlands, it's sent directly to the public prosecutor's office) to review, a final manual check by an authorized officer before a fine is sent out."

According to Statista, 661 people were killed on the roads in the Netherlands last year.

Public Prosecutor for road safety Achilles Dames says distracted drivers are one of three main causes of severe road accidents in the country.

But the camera system doesn’t present a further distraction for drivers.

As the cameras are infrared, drivers will not see a flash.


"It (the smart detection camera) doesn't detect the face of the driver. It only seas the steering wheel, the hands, eventually (he means possibly) the mobile device and of course the licence plate of the car, because that's what we use to ... we send the fine to the owner of the car."

In the Netherlands, operating a mobile phone while driving is punishable by a fine of up to 240 euros.