Motorists have been caught buying tyres for their car, ordering coffees and checking their bank balances during a crackdown on mobile phone use in South Australia.

Police fined 291 drivers during Operation Fatal Distraction over five days last week, unearthing a plethora of excuses.

One motorist was spotted driving with a mobile phone in her hand and picking up a second phone when she stopped at the traffic lights.

Another man was caught checking his stock portfolio.

Traffic Services Branch Superintendent Bob Gray said no reason was acceptable for being distracted while driving.

“Driving is a complex task and using a mobile phone for any reason can significantly impair your reaction time, your ability to maintain speed and your ability to judge safe gaps in traffic,” he said.

“Last year in this state we lost 46 lives in collisions where distraction was a contributing factor.

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“This year we have already lost 24 lives due to distraction.”

Supt Gray said a text or phone call was never worth more than a life.

“Whether it’s your boss, your partner, your friend or family trying to contact you, it can wait,” he said.

AAP