Driving penalty points system sent to government for consideration

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Traffic in Tallinn. Source: Ken Mürk/ERR

The Ministry of Economic Affairs wants to introduce a driving penalty point system that would see drivers lose their licenses if they collect enough points. The plans have been sent to the government for consideration.

Minister of Economic Affairs and Infrastructure Taavi Aas (Center) said Estonia has reached a plateau in road safety and it is necessary to introduce new measures. 

"In the last three years, the number of road deaths has remained the same, the number of injuries has not decreased for 10 years. The cause of serious traffic accidents is mostly repeating offenders. Every accident is preventable and the state must do everything to navigate this," said Aas.

Between 2014-2018, repeat offenders were also almost five times more likely to be involved in road accidents involving human casualties.

According to the initial timetable, the point system should be completed by 2025 at the latest.

Different traffic offenses, such as speeding or driving over the alcohol limit, would be linked to a certain number of points and when the limit is reached this would result in a license being revoked or suspended. There will be three levels according to the seriousness of the offense and the length of time points are valid for is linked to drivers' behavior.

Drivers who agree to participate in a training or rehabilitation program to improve their knowledge would also be able to reduce their number of points.

If the driver does not change his behavior and the penalty limit is reached for the first time, their right to drive will be suspended. If they want to restore their license, they must undergo additional training at a driving school and pass a theory exam at the Transport Board. In case of repeated suspension of the right to drive, a psychological assessment must also be undertaken.

Initially, the point system will not include fines for speed cameras, as they relate to the vehicle and not to the person. If a legal solution is found to personalize the violations, they would be added to the penalty point system.

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Editor: Helen Wright

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