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News from Prague

1 July 2006

Being a subscriber of your bulletin I was thinking that it might be interesting for you to hear some notes concerning change of our traffic law which is said to be biggest change since revolution in 1989. New law became operative since beginning of July and brought such a news like obligatory usage of lights on all vehicles during year, harsh penalties for speeding, drinking alcohol when driving etc. Committing a driving offence, traffic offender is paying increased penalty plus newly some points are deducted from his credit (12 points) which may lead to loosing a driving licence when credit gets to zero. Competences of police as well as municipal police has been upgraded.

Driving first days after law came into an action I believe all drivers (including me) were nearly shocked to see how massive change in atmosphere on the road has happened. Mainly in the urban areas speeding has been reduced a lot, with a lot of people driving 40km/h instead of 50 km/h because of the possible threat. Of course a lot of people are complaining about high penalties and also due to unclear post election situation the new law is often discussed political subject. However first numbers reported by our Ministry of transportation yesterday are very positive with number of people killed in road accidents reduced by 70% ! and number of road accidents reduced by more than 30%.

Should you be interested in hearing more about it, please let me know and I can keep you informed.

Kind regards,Leo DittmannPrague, The Czech Rep.