New Spanish Traffic Laws You Need to be Aware Of

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New Spanish Traffic LawsWe know that many of the guests who visit Sunset Beach Club every year like to hire a car and explore some of the hidden treasures the Costa del Sol has to offer. 

In a previous post we warned you of the possible consequences of not paying speeding or parking fines when you rent a car in Spain. Well today, we’ve got some important information which you need to be aware of.

The Spanish government recently passed some extensive reforms to their Traffic Laws and these came in to effect on the 9th May 2014. In a recent article, the English edition of El Pais highlighted 20 new rules and laws, we’ve taken the liberty of just including the ones we feel could affect you if you are thinking of hiring a car (or riding a bike) in Spain.

New Traffic Laws in Spain

1)      Helmets are now mandatory in cities for cyclists under 16: Careful with this one as non compliance could lead to 200 Euro fines for parents!

2)      Small children cannot ride in the front seat: Until now children under 12 could ride in the front seat if they had a booster seat or other approved retaining device. If you use taxis during your holidays, this law applies to them too, the only difference being that parents will be held accountable for violations, not the taxi drivers.

3)      Drunk driving fines have increased: If you are caught with double the allowed limit of alcohol in the blood, you will face a fine of 1000€.

4)      Fines for driving under the influence of drugs: Police will be able to carry our saliva tests to determine if someone has taken drugs. Guilty parties will be slapped with a 1000 Euro fine on the spot, regardless of whether the drugs affected their driving or not.

5)      Pedestrian alcohol and drug tests: Crossing the road in the wrong place could result in the obligation to take a drug and alcohol test. Make sure you use those pedestrian crossings!

6)      New speed limits (in towns and motorways): The speed limit on some motorways is being raised to 130 km/h. In many towns, the speed limit will be reduced from 30 km/h to 20 km/h.

7)      Speeding fines can apply for exceeding the established limit by 1 km/h!

8)      Speed camera detectors and jammers are banned: Only alert systems offering information about the locations of speed cameras based on databases will be legal. GPS devices incorporating speed camera detection capabilities will have to deactivate this option.

9)      Road debris: Dropping items of any kind from the windows of your vehicle will result in heavy fines.

10)  The police will be able to fine vehicles without hailing them down.

11)  The 50% discount for early payment of fines gets extended: You will now have 20 days to pay a fine and still be eligible for the 50% discount.

12)  New reasons for immobilizing vehicles: The police can immobilise the vehicles of drivers who let children ride without legally compliant child seats as well as those vehicles being driven without the proper license or permit.

These are just some of the new traffic laws affecting drivers in Spain; however, the 12 mentioned above are some of the most important which could apply to holiday makers who visit the country.

What do you think of the new Spanish traffic laws? Do any of them seem excessive to you? Let us know in the comments below.

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