Measures against road accidents

There are many things the French are proud of, but their road death statistics isn’t one of them. They strive, through various laws, to reduce the number of accidents and fatalities year on year, and have done so with success until recently. A rise in 2014 (for the first time in twelve years) has caused Valls to announce 22 new measures this month with the aim of making drivers more responsible and to get the statistics back on a downward trend. "These figures are unacceptable" and "require further strong measures", insisted the Prime Minister. His goal is to cut road deaths in half by 2020.

radar

Measures include the installation of 500 'real' radars bringing the country’s total number to 4,700 and more than 10,000 ‘fake’ ones by 2018.

France will also experiment with drones to monitor areas at risk and motorbikes will need to pass a compulsory MOT when they are resold. Bikers will also be required to wear gloves as their instinct is to put their hands out when they have an accident. Another significant new measure is that companies will now be obliged to reveal the identity of their employees who commit offences while driving company cars drivers.

These new measures are in addition to the 26 already introduced in January of this year (see previous article) yet despite average speeds on the increase the speed limit has not been reduced as expected from its current 90 km/h.


police

France’s bid to improve road safety has caused uproar in some quarters. Chantal Perrichon, President of ‘la Ligue contre les violences routières’ fears France is becoming a nanny state with its catalogue of repressive measures, but until drivers take responsibility and comply with the rules and regulations that are put in place to safeguard lives, then the country feels obliged to police the roads and clamp down on those who disobey the law.