Bulgarian MPs Move to Curb Speeding, Drunk Driving

Politics » DOMESTIC | June 22, 2016, Wednesday // 22:25
Bulgaria: Bulgarian MPs Move to Curb Speeding, Drunk Driving File photo by BGNES

Unauthorized car races on Bulgarian roads will be punishable by hefty fines and cancellation of the driving licence for up to three years, the Transport Committee in Parliament has decided in a move designed to cut the number of road accidents.

Those who organize or take part in an unathorised car race on a public road will face fines of up to BGN 3,000 (EUR 1,500) and cancellation of their driving licences for a year under changes to the Road Traffic Act passed on second and final reading by the parliamentary committee, Darik Radio reported.

Repeat offenders will see their driving licenses cancelled for three years and will have to pay fines of BGN 5,000.

Driving with blood alcohol content in the range from 0.5 to 0.8 per 1,000 will be punishable by a fine of BGN 500 and cancellation of the driving licence for six months. Driving with blood alcohol content measuring between 0.8 and 1.2 per 1,000 will carry a fixed fine of BGN 1,000 and cancellation of the driving licence for one year.

At present, the law doesn’t  differentiate between the higher and lower levels of blood alcohol content in the range from 0.5 to 1.2 per 1,000 in terms of the fines and the duration of the cancellation of the driving licence, leaving the ruling to the discretion of traffic police officers.

For the first time, driving in the opposite lane on motorways and high-speed roads – a case of reckless driving increasingly taking place of Bulgarian motorways - will be punishable by fines of up to BGN 4,000 and cancellation of the driving licence for up to six months for repeat offenders.

Road accidents in Bulgaria claimed the lives of 680 people last year,with the number of victims increasing compared to 2014. The increase in the number of road fatalities was sustained for a third year running.

Traffic police data show that 7,296 road accidents took place last year in Bulgaria, in which 8,946 people were injured. Bulgaria has a population of about 7.2 million.

With  95 dead in road accidents per million people Bulgaria and Romania each had the highest annual road fatality rates in the EU-28 last year, well above the EU average of 51.5 per million, the European Commission has said.



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