The Government of Victoria in Australia is set to begin a three-month trial programme that will utilise safety cameras to identify distracted driving on state roads.

The technology is designed to identify mobile phone usage by motorists, as well as other violations.

Acusensus, the state government’s current traffic camera services contractor, will carry out the trials.

The cameras are designed to take high-resolution images irrespective of weather and light conditions to enable an accurate review of potential offences.

Set to begin this week, the programme will assess the effectiveness of the safety cameras in detecting dangerous driving behaviour before its potential rollout.

In addition, it will enable state authorities to understand how the technology can be integrated with the existing infrastructure to optimise its functioning.

No infringements will be issued during the trial period.

Victoria Minister for Police and Emergency Services Lisa Neville said: “We know distracted drivers can have devastating outcomes on our roads; this technology is another step towards targeting this kind of unacceptable behaviour and keeping all road users safe.

“We all have a role to play in reducing our road toll. Every time someone picks up their phone behind the wheel they are putting lives in danger. This technology will detect those who choose to put lives at risk on our roads.”

According to a research, the usage of a mobile phone increases the risk of a fatal road accident by four times.

In 2017-18, Victoria fined more than 30,000 motorists for using a mobile phone while driving.

A study by the Monash University Accident Research Centre suggested that an automated mobile phone enforcement camera programme can help in preventing 95 casualty crashes annually.

A similar initiative was also started by other Australian province Queensland, which also aims to utilise the technology to detect motorists who fail to wear a seatbelt.

Earlier this month, Victoria announced plans to streamline an A$2.2bn ($1.5bn) road construction programme to boost the economy and create jobs.