Wednesday, 7 June 2023, 14:42
Regulations for road users in Spain have changed in 2023. The Directorate-General of Traffic and local authorities are cracking down some previously existing offences and also issuing fines for newly-introduced laws.
One of these new fines relates to whether or not a vehicle can enter a low emission zone (ZEB) in towns or cities that have a population of more than 50,000 inhabitants. If a vehicle enters one of these new areas without an accredition label to allow its entry into the zone, the authorities - in this case the local council - can impose a fine of 200 euros.
According to Susana Sagra Álvarez , lawyer at Pyramid Consulting, "we recommend that the DGT environmental sticker is visible on the vehicle at all times. However, the DGT is not involved in this type of offence. Instead it is the local city or town hall itself, and it is they who determine the amount of the fines".
"For example, Madrid city council is fining drivers 200 euros for this type of offence. For this reason, Pyramid Consulting recommends appealing this type of fine, as it is disproportionate," explained Sagra.
Another of the new offences that has been created is the one that affects users of personal mobility vehicles (VMP), who are obliged to undergo alcohol and drug tests if requested, and are penalised with the same fine as if they were driving any other vehicle.
"In the case of exceeding alcohol levels, the fine is 500 to 1,000 euros, depending on the level, while in the case of the presence of drugs in the driver's system, the fine is 1,000 euros," Sagra explained. "In case of refusal to submit to these tests, the driver will be reported for the offence. If the driver tests positive for alcohol or drugs, the VMP will be immobilised, as is the case with all other vehicles," she added.
The law currently stipulates two maximum alcohol limits for driving a vehicle. In general, it is set at a maximum of 0.25 mg/l of expelled air while it is 0.15 mg/l for novice and professional drivers. This rule has now been supplemented by a zero limit for drivers under 18 years of age. VMPs and other electrically propelled light vehicles are only allowed to carry one person, so that the carrying of two persons on such a vehicle is punishable with a fine of 100 euros.
Another new fine is that users of VMPs at night are "obliged to wear reflective clothing to be seen by other drivers. It will be considered negligent driving and therefore punishable when circulating at night without lighting or reflective clothing or elements. The corresponding fine is 200 euros", she added.
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