Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Potential Changes to Traffic Legislation

In a recent meeting of Congress, new traffic legislation has been passed that will affect motorists, cyclists and pedestrians on Spanish highways. Whilst the laws will not come into effect for some months and might need some additional regulations to put them into practice, you might want to keep them in mind when you are out and about.

Small Children may NOT Ride in the Front Seat - Drivers found to be carrying children under 1.35meters in height in the front passenger seat can be stopped and fined, unless all the back seats are already taken up by other children also under the height limit, or the car has no back seats. Taxies will also have to follow the same rules, but the parents and not the taxi driver will be held responsible for any violations, with fines up to 200euros.

Foreign Residents MUST Register their Vehicles - Until now foreign residents living in Spain did not have to register their vehicles here, but this is another change for the future. New regulations will require registration of your vehicle and give deadlines for this. This is believed to have been brought about as in current practice it is difficult to enforce traffic fines or legal controls if the vehicles are not registered.

Fines for Driving After Taking Drugs - Police won't have to prove that the use of drugs has influenced a persons driving abilities. If the results of a saliva test show drugs in the body, the driver can expect a 1.000euro fine. Prescription drugs are excluded from this.

Ban on Speed Camera Detectors and Jammers - The use of either of these items will be prohibited. Drivers caught using Speed Camera Detectors will be liable for fines of 200euros and 3 points off their licence, whilst the use of Speed Camera Jammers will entail a 6.000euro fine and 6 points off their licence. GPS devices that include Speed Camera Detectors will have to deactivate this option or users will also receive a fine.

Police Can Impose Fines Without Stopping the Vehicles - Officers will be able to fine vehicles without stopping them, if the police are performing duties that prevent them from doing so or giving chase.

And finally

Larger Fines for Drunk Drivers - In a bid to reduce the numbers of drunk drivers on Spanish roads, anyone found to be driving with double the allowed limit of alcohol in the blood will receive a fine of 1.000euros, rather than the current 500euros. If you are unlucky and get caught twice in the same year, the fine increases to 2.000euros.

There are more to come that we will advise you of in our next posting.

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