Accidents where a mobile phone contributed to the cause has risen by 21% since 2010 according to Department for Transport figures, prompting calls for more enforcement by police.

According to the statistics, there were 422 accidents where the driver was using a mobile phone in 2013 compared to 349 accidents in 2010.

There were more accidents involving drivers ‘in a hurry’ in 2013 compared to 2012 – a 2% increase to 18,167 from 17,847.

Motoring services organisation the RAC claims these figures reflect motorists concerns about the use of mobile phones from its Report on Motoring 2014, which found that 34% of motorists are worried about other drivers being distracted by mobiles while behind the wheel.

“In light of these figures from the Department for Transport, we are reiterating the statement we made in our Report on Motoring 2014, by calling on the police to enforce the current laws on the use of hand-held phones while driving more effectively,” said David Bizley, RAC chief engineer. “This must be supported by a high-profile, Government-funded road safety campaign that makes using a hand-held mobile phone at the wheel as socially unacceptable as drink-driving,” said Bizley.