Enforcement

Title: How traffic law enforcement can contribute to safer roads

Organisation: ETSC (European Transport Safety Council)
Date uploaded: 5th July 2016
Date published/launched: June 2016

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A decline in the enforcement of traffic offences is contributing to Europe’s failure to cut road casualties, according to this report by the ETSC.

The report uses the number of speeding tickets, roadside alcohol breath tests, tickets for non-use of seat belt and tickets for illegal use of a mobile phone per head of population as an indicator, assuming that they are broadly proportionate to the level of enforcement activity.

The report says the ideal indicator on how to assess the level of enforcement of speeding would be to compare countries on the basis of time spent on speed enforcement or checks performed both by the police and by safety camera, but this information is not available in most countries.

The report shows that in more than half the countries where data is available, the number of tickets issued over the last five years for mobile phone offences has fallen. The report says that this suggests lower levels of enforcement.

Sweden, The Netherlands and Finland - where there have been some of the ‘biggest slow-downs in reducing road deaths’ - have all reported a reduction in the number of speeding tickets issued.

In the UK, where the report says deaths have also been ‘slow to reduce’, the number of tickets issued fell after 2010 when government cuts affected enforcement levels, but are now starting to increase again.

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