Daily reports thousands of motorists lack valid licences
Almost two years ago the government introduced new legislation aimed at improving safety on Czech roads. A new points system and increased police vigilance at first made a positive impact on fatality numbers, but since then the number of accidents and related deaths has once again risen. All too often, too many drivers fail to obey the rules of the road. Worse, one daily has reported - citing transport ministry numbers - thousands of motorists in the country are failing to respect even the most basic of tenets: obtaining a driver’s license before getting behind the wheel.
“It’s terribly irresponsible and of course very dangerous and we have to look at who’s responsible. Often, cases involve either individuals from low-income brackets in older or beat-up vehicles or involve fairly young drivers under the influence of alcohol in stronger cars wanting to show off. In both cases, such drivers abuse the law where they can: that means driving on secondary or local roads where police controls are less common. Those are areas the law needs to focus on to have a greater impact.”
Up until 2006 driving without a valid license was classified only as a misdemeanour, but is now a criminal offence. Now, those who do, risk fines, jail time of up to one year, and in rare cases, the confiscation of their vehicle. But even such threats are not always enough. Václav Špička again:
Most recently one judge sent a 30-year-old man to prison after he flaunted the law repeatedly: picked up early in the year, he was let off with a fine and driving ban because he had a young family at home. But he was soon caught again behind the wheel without a license and will now go behind bars for six months.