EU member states to step up cooperation in road safety bid


EU member states are stepping up cooperation in the cross-border investigation of traffic offences to help prevent reckless driving while abroad.

With approximately 40 per cent of cross-border traffic offences currently going unpunished, MEPs have updated the rules to get EU countries to cooperate more and help each other to find a foreign driver liable for a traffic offence.

The new rules oblige national authorities to reply to requests from another EU country without delay, and no later than two months after it has gathered the necessary information.

In addition, upon request of the member state in which the offence occurred, the offender’s EU country of residence can take over the collection of road traffic fines, provided the amount is more than €70 and has not been paid after all legal options are exhausted.

More offences

The updated rules will expand the list of traffic offences committed by non-resident drivers that trigger cross-border assistance and can result in a fine. In addition to speeding, drink-driving or failing to stop at a red light, EU legislators added dangerous parking, dangerous overtaking, crossing a solid line and hit and run offences, amongst other offences.

Clear deadline and ban on private debt collectors

The EU country where the traffic offence occurred will have 11 months from the date of the offence to issue a traffic offence notice. The offence notice must include the time and circumstances of the offence, as well as information on how to appeal the fine.

At the initiative of MEPs, private entities will be banned from helping EU countries collect traffic fines from foreign drivers (as of two years after the rules are transposed into national law).

Online portal

To increase transparency and facilitate the implementation of the new rules, the Commission is tasked with creating an online portal listing the rules, appeal options and the relevant road traffic fines, amongst other information.



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