|Half of Europeans’ bad EU driving goes unpunished. – AFP/VNA Photo |Viet Nam News
BRUSSELS – About half of the driving offences committed by Europeans in other EU countries went unpunished last year, according to internal documents.
A European Commission paper admitted that new EU legislation adopted last year, aimed at bringing an end to the impunity enjoyed by Europeans caught driving badly in neighbouring countries within the bloc, had "not been used to its full potential".
"In 2015, approximately 50 percent of detected road traffic offences which were committed by non-residents were not investigated," the paper said.
The new legislation, in place since May 2015, set up a system whereby member states could share drivers’ registration data with other EU countries, allowing them to identify and fine the perpetrators of offences like drink-driving, speeding and failing to wear a seatbelt.
While half of the fines were paid voluntarily last year, the Commission identified several reasons for the failure to recuperate the rest of the money, including "lack of mutual assistance and cooperation" between countries in investigating the offences.
The new EU directive covers a range of offences including driving under the influence of drink or drugs, jumping red lights and using a mobile phone behind the wheel, but does not cover parking offences.
Britain, Ireland and Denmark are exempt from the legislation and are officially due to put it in place before May 2017. – AFP