Ministry proposes lighter traffic penalties

Update: October, 02/2015 - 16:39
A police check point on the Phap Van – Cau Gie Highway, which banned motorbikes from February 2012. Photo

HA NOI (VNS) — The Ministry of Public Security proposed today a reduction in the severity of penalties for a number of traffic safety violations. 

The ministry's stand was that some penalties were too severe for the violations and were impractical, creating complications for law enforcement in their daily operations. 

For example, the fine for motorcyclists joining traffic on prohibited highways was set at VND2-3 million (US$90-135), almost ten times higher than the previous amount stipulated in Decree 171/2013 for administrative fines for traffic safety violations. In addition to the fine, these drivers also have their driver's licences suspended for up to three months. 

Similarly, the fine for bicyclists was also increased from VND100,000-200,000 ($4-9) to a maximum of VND1 million ($40). 

The ministry had recommended the increase in fines for violations deemed to be the direct cause of traffic accidents, such as speeding, drunk driving and failure to obey traffic control devices and traffic police officers. 

"There have been cases where vehicles were impounded, but the owners did not care to show up as the fine was higher than the value of the vehicle," Deputy Minister of Public Security Le Quy Vuong said in a report shared with the Ministry of Transport. 

The increase in fines also required police officers to report these cases to higher authorities, who were responsible for making the final decision. The public security minister believed this practice unnecessarily complicated the process and hindered the speedy handling of traffic violations. — VNS