Police fine more than 950 drivers in three days | Cyprus Mail

More than 950 violations were recorded over the last three days, police said on Sunday.

In a concerted effort across the island, police were active to prevent serious and fatal traffic collisions and ensure safe movement on the roads.

Until Sunday morning, during traffic inspections carried out since Friday by the traffic police more than 950 traffic violations were reported.

Police said violations included speeding, traffic lights violations, as well as driving under the influence of alcohol.

A total of 568 drivers were reported for speeding while for traffic signal and traffic lights violations 84 drivers were reported.

Twenty five drivers tested positive for driving under the influence of alcohol, while 10 drivers tested positive for a preliminary drugs test.

Another 27 complaints were made for not using a seat belt by drivers and passengers, 19 complaints were made for driving with non-free hands, and 33 complaints about offences of illegal parking.

According to the police, there were 17 complaints of drivers not covered by an insurance certificate, as well as 18 complaints of drivers who had no MOT, and 112 complaints for driving without valid registration.

Source: Police fine more than 950 drivers in three days | Cyprus Mail

Motorist sentenced to four months in prison for traffic violations   | Cyprus Mail

Limassol district court on Wednesday sentenced a 26-year-old to four months in prison for a series of traffic violations committed on January 29.

He was found guilty of driving a motor vehicle without an insurance and licence, with an expired MOT and driving while having his driving licence suspended by a court. There were six charges in all.

He was handed concurrent sentences with the longest being that of four months in prison.

Source: Motorist sentenced to four months in prison for traffic violations   | Cyprus Mail

Around 1,300 drivers fined in 48 hours | Cyprus Mail

Police booked around 1,300 drivers for various traffic offences between March 4 and 5, they said on Sunday.

During the checks, 672 drivers were fined for speeding and 15 for driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs, 75 for not using a seat belt, 84 for using a mobile phone while driving and 206 for signal violations.

The remainder of the fines related to other driving offences.

Police said on Friday they would be stepping up patrols over the long weekend.

Source: Around 1,300 drivers fined in 48 hours | Cyprus Mail

Road safety lecture delivered to third country nationals

accident1 2

In total 85 third-country nationals and their employers participated a police road safety event to prevent serious traffic collisions in Sotira municipality, police announced on Thursday.

The road safety lecture was held by the head of the road safety department of the Famagusta police on Wednesday, focusing on third-country nationals, police said.

It was part of efforts to prevent and reduce fatal and serious road traffic collisions and to raise awareness among drivers about vulnerable users of the road network.

Police said the lecture, which was conducted with the help of an interpreter, was attended by around 85 foreign workers from Egypt and Nepal, and several of their employers.

Participants were given a safety vest as well as other informative material.

Police force builds up its smart fleet | Cyprus Mail

The police have procured 96 new vehicles, most of which are ‘smart vehicles’, 42 of which are connected to the ANPR system and another nine are ‘stealth’ cars, which will not be immediately recognisable as police patrol units.

The ANPR system can detect a variety of factors, such as number plates, speed control, valid driver’s license, and outstanding warrants or fines. In October 2020, it was announced that the police had obtained 49 such vehicles, with Wednesday’s report adding more to the force.

Head of the police’s technological development department Loizos Prastitis told Phileleftheros that the smart cars will primarily focus on the secondary road network. Of those, 44 are SUVs and will replace the existing fleet.

The force will now also have at its disposal two mobile command units which will be able to independently coordinate the patrol fleet.

They will be deployed at scenes of trouble and will be able to take statements from witnesses on location.

The two units will also be fitted with screens to follow live footage of ongoing incidents.

The nine ‘stealth cars’ will not have police lights or markings and will blend in with the usual traffic.

And, finally, the police force is also being beefed up with a further five anti-riot vehicles which will be able to transport teams to the scene of riots, illegal gatherings and other such incidents.

Source: Police force builds up its smart fleet | Cyprus Mail

After bumpy start, 6,000 traffic camera fines finally issued | Cyprus Mail

The first 6,000 fines for more than 30,00 traffic violations caught by fixed and mobile cameras have been sent out to offenders, 40 days after the system went live officially, police told CyBC radio on Thursday.

Deputy traffic chief Harris Evripidou said the out-of-court fines are being sent by registered mail together with links and passwords to a website where offenders can see details of the traffic offence as well as photographs.

Most of the offences are in residential areas, he added.

The fine must be paid within 30 days otherwise it will rise by half and must be paid within 45 days. If it is not paid by then, the case will be sent to court.

Four fixed cameras have been installed in Nicosia and police are also using four mobile cameras, the first phase of the plan that will eventually see 110 cameras across the Republic in a renewed push to stem the bloodshed on the roads.

Already beset with delays in its launch, the traffic camera scheme got off to a bumpy start when it emerged that administrative and procedural complications were holding up offenders being fined.

The first set of traffic cameras were launched on October 25 and were operating on a pilot basis until January 1, at which point fines were set to be issued.

Yet it is only 40 days after the grace period ended that the first fines have gone out, with a tangled bureaucracy and poor communication between government departments billed as the one of the main factors for the delay.

Local media reported last month that one office may have the public’s information stored in Greek, another in English and another in a mix of both, making it difficult to confirm a person’s place of residence, for example.

Mobile camera units typically record speeding violations while the fixed units also pick up passing the line at a red light, speeding, not wearing a helmet and parking on yellow lines.

The contract for the cameras includes 90 fixed units in 30 locations around the island as well as 20 mobile cameras which police will determine their location and operating hours on a daily basis.

Source: After bumpy start, 6,000 traffic camera fines finally issued | Cyprus Mail

Authorities mull changes to learner’s licence requirements | Cyprus Mail

Road safety lessons at school could become a prerequisite for young drivers to secure their learner’s licence as government ministries discuss measures to improve driving standards.

Meetings have been held between government ministries to see what can be done, with the transport and education ministries studying which measures could be brought in at schools to cultivate a greater culture of road safety.

One such proposal is that attending road safety lessons at school become a prerequisite to obtaining a learner’s driving licence.

Elsewhere, the transport and education ministers looked to conscripts at the national guard – a demographic seen as more likely to be involved in crashes.

Proposals may be made to hold road safety seminars at the army camps.

Source: Authorities mull changes to learner’s licence requirements | Cyprus Mail

Municipalities eye installing traffic cameras | Cyprus Mail

Traffic Cameras

Municipalities may soon deploy traffic cameras of their own following the green light from the transport ministry, but offences such as speeding won’t be recorded.

The reopening of Nicosia’s revamped Makarios Avenue brought the issue to prominence as one of its two lanes is open only to buses and a few eligible vehicles – as per EU stipulations, which funded the project – but all manners of other cars are encroaching on the bus lane.

Nicosia municipality has said that it is unable to prevent private cars from entering the bus lane without the assistance of a camera monitoring system – which would issue fines to ineligible vehicles veering into it.

“They are currently being installed and the network will be operational by May or June,” Nicosia mayor Constantinos Yiorkadjis told SigmaLive on Wednesday morning.

Yiorkadjis said that the police are responsible for preventing ineligible vehicles from entering the bus lane and not the municipality’s traffic wardens – who instead only check for parking violations.

But it remains undecided as to whether the police or the municipalities will bear responsibility for the camera system, Yiorkadjis said.

Discussions are underway to revise the institutional framework which would permit the camera systems to operate, a process which got further underway following a meeting hosted on Tuesday by the transport ministry. The union of municipalities attended, as did legal advisors who are to draw up plans which will in turn be sent to the transport ministry, the legal services and eventually parliament for a vote.

As it stands, the cameras deployed by municipalities will only issue fines for parking violations and vehicles entering lanes they are not permitted.

Makarios Avenue reopened on December 7 but it was announced that all vehicles will temporarily gain access, seemingly in contradiction to the stipulations set out by Nicosia’s urban mobility plan.

Source: Municipalities eye installing traffic cameras | Cyprus Mail

Shake-up coming for used-car industry | Cyprus Mail

nicosia 02

The used car market is set to become more transparent following a new push for greater clarity as to a vehicle’s history of damage and repair.

The road transport department has opened for public consultation a proposal to amend the law, so that a vehicle’s registration certificate would include a history and list of damage, repairs and replacement parts.

Head of the department Yiannis Nikolaides told the Cyprus Mail on Thursday that the company which insured the car would be required to inform the registrar of vehicles of any damage incurred.

“Checks were previously carried out on used cars coming in from abroad but now we want to regulate this issue domestically as well – so if a car is involved in crash in Cyprus the insurer would be obliged to inform the authorities,” Nikolaides told us.

Insurers would also have to list the repairs, such as whether the airbags were deployed and were then replaced with the correct ones.

Specifically, the proposal says that “damage from crashes, flooding, hail, fire or any other incident” must be reported.

The proposal is open to public consultation and Nikolaides told us that the reaction at large has been positive.

But others may lose out, he said.

Some have benefited from “blind spots” in the current regulations and the lack of a transparent history of the vehicle, but they are unlikely to voice their opposition in public, Nikolaides said.

“There are some who may have been taking advantage,” he added.

Currently, sellers may dress up and pass off a car as being in great condition despite having been in a serious crash – with it being up to their discretion to inform the prospective buyer.

Nikolaides said the amendments would ensure that the cars in use on the roads are safer, and future buyers are getting a fair deal on their purchase and can handle their vehicle accordingly.

Source: Shake-up coming for used-car industry | Cyprus Mail

Cabinet approves push to tighten licence law for moped drivers

Cyprus has moved a step closer to changing the law on driving licences for mopeds and motorbikes, an area which has long been criticised as being too lax but could dramatically shake up the food delivery industry.

The council of ministers on Wednesday approved the transport ministry’s proposal to amend the law, which would require that learner drivers be accompanied by a licensed driving instructor on another vehicle.

The proposal must still pass a vote in parliament, but the changes would have a significant impact on the delivery industry – in which many currently work solely with a learner’s licence.

The law currently allows for moped – and some motorbikes with certain specifications – to be driven indefinitely with just a learner’s licence.

This provisional licence is obtained merely by passing a road sign test.

The ministry’s proposed changes also seek to impose a timeframe for the eligibility of a learner licence to two years and require that learner drivers must wear more protective clothing – as would be expected of a motorbike driver, such as high visibility vests and trousers.

Should the holder of a learner’s licence fail to proceed to obtaining a full licence, they will have to reacquire their provisional one.

The proposal also lays out that learner drivers must wear jackets or a high vis vest, trousers, boots or adequate shoes, protective knee pads and gloves.

The protective gear stipulations also apply to drivers of motorbikes and mopeds who use the vehicles as part of their work.

The transport ministry said the proposal was shaped following decisions made by the road safety council, which also highlighted that 16 motorcyclists died from crashes in 2019, 14 in 2020 and 14 in 2021.