Road safety: Tougher vehicle testing rules to save lives

Road safety: Tougher vehicle testing rules to save lives
Vehicle checks are fundamental to road safety. More than 5 people die on Europe’s roads every day in accidents linked to technical failure. So the European Commission has adopted new rules to toughen up the testing regime and widen its scope. The new proposals aim to save more than 1,200 lives a year and to avoid more than 36,000 accidents linked to technical failure.

Key elements of the new proposals include
– Compulsory EU wide testing for scooters and motorbikes. Motorbike and scooter riders, particularly young riders, are the highest risk group of road users.
– Increasing the frequency of periodic roadworthiness tests for old vehicles. Between 5 and 6 years, the number of serious accidents related to technical failure increases dramatically (see graph in MEMO/12/555 attached).
– Increasing the frequency of tests for cars and vans with exceptionally high mileage. This will bring their tests in line with other high mileage vehicles such as taxis, ambulances etc.
– Improving the quality of vehicle tests by setting common minimum standards for deficiencies, equipment and inspectors.
– Making electronic safety components subject to mandatory testing.
– Clamping down on mileage fraud, with registered mileage readings.
In all cases, the proposals set common EU wide minimum standards for vehicle checks, with Member States free to go further if appropriate.
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