Status: 22.09.2023, 05:25 a.m.
By: Maximilian Hertel
The EU is planning new laws to strengthen the legal framework for greater road safety. These are intended to affect novice drivers in particular.
Frankfurt am Main – The EU plans to better protect road users from accidents in the future. The "Vision Zero Road Fatalities" strategy aims to reduce the number of road deaths to zero by 2050.
New EU legislative proposals are aimed at young novice drivers, who are statistically more likely to be involved in fatal accidents. Tougher regulations are proposed to reduce the risk of risky driving by young novice drivers.
More safety on European roads – stricter regulations for novice drivers
Although the number of road deaths was reduced from 2001,2021 to 51,400 between 19 and 800, the EU's informal Transport Council declared the high number of victims to be a "major social problem". According to the EU, the cost of road accidents in the Union would also take up around 2 percent of annual GDP.
The dispute over stricter EU driving licence rules continues to escalate. © Marijan Murat/dpa
This is now to change through stricter regulations for novice drivers. The EU plans to further expand the legal framework for road traffic and enforce restrictions such as a night driving ban or a speed limit.
EU driving licence plans: speed limit, a weight limit for vehicles and a ban on driving at night
Specifically, the EU's draft report proposed several ways to minimise the risk posed by novice drivers on European roads across borders.
- A uniform minimum age for issuing driving licences is intended to ensure that stricter rules for novice drivers can be implemented more easily within the EU in the future. This includes, for example, measures to regulate alcohol and speed limits.
- Laws are to be created for the member states that include a speed limit for novice drivers outside built-up areas. For example, only a maximum speed of 90 km/h will apply to beginners on motorways.
- For cars and commercial vehicles with a total weight of more than 1,800 tonnes, a new driving licence class "B+" is to be introduced. Since SUVs in particular are considered difficult to drive, an extra driver's license must be obtained here.
- A new legal regulation is also intended to enable member states to impose a night driving ban on novice drivers. For example, this can be claimed from 12 noon at night to 06 am.
Children and seniors are also affected by the new EU laws on driving licences
The European draft report also includes a proposal that children should also be made more aware of road safety at school from the second secondary level onwards. A "minimum level of instruction in relation to road safety" is up for debate, in which information is to be provided about seat belts and the protection of cyclists, for example.
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For seniors, on the other hand, it should become mandatory from the age of 60 to undergo a medical examination in order to continue to ensure their fitness to drive. The validity period of the driver's license should be steadily shortened. From the age of 70, the driver's license would only be valid for five years according to the nine draft and from 80 for another two years.
Changes to the driver's license: First voices from Germany are getting loud
Markus Ferber, a member of the European Parliament for the Christian Social Union (CSU), has already commented on the plans of the French Green politician Karima Delli, who had launched the new drafts. With "proposal from the deepest absurdistan" he commented on the new EU laws. The proposals of the Green politician are aimed solely at restricting individual mobility in Europe.
Michael Haberland of the automobile club "Mobil in Deutschland" is also bothered by the legal ideas regarding weight limits. "An extra driver's license for heavier cars, for example, would be complete nonsense. After all, many cars, vans, station wagons and SUVs have long weighed more than 1.8 tons. Thus, these proposals are rubbish that no one in Germany wants," he told Focus online.