Cabinet approves legislation to regulate use of scooters | Cyprus Mail

The cabinet on Monday approved legislation regulating the use of scooters or e-scooters, including minimum specifications and safety measures.

The bills were prepared by the transport ministry in a bid to ensure road safety, as the use of such vehicles appears to be on the rise.

According to the bills, a scooter is any self-propelled device using any form of energy, which can carry a seated or standing person. The device has handlebars, a drive shaft, and at least two wheels.

Anything that does not conform with the legal definition regarding personal mobility devices, such as hoverboards and skates, will be prohibited from use on public areas/roads.

Scooters can be used in bicycle road or lanes, or any other area that constitutes an extension of a bicycle road – common space used by cyclists and pedestrians.

They can also use pavements or squares provided the local authority has permitted their use in such areas.

Users must be 16 and above. Protective helmets are mandatory.

Rental scooters must carry insurance coverage for third parties.

The minimum equipment scooters must have are brakes, lights – rear and front – tyres and a bell.

Their maximum speed should not exceed 15km/hour. The ministry warned consumers must be careful regarding their choice of scooter if they want to use them in public areas after the law comes into force.

The bills also introduce obligations for importers, manufacturers and sellers as regards minimum equipment and maximum speed.

Rental companies will be licenced by local authorities.

The bills also introduce offences and penalties though no details were immediately available.

Source: Cabinet approves legislation to regulate use of scooters | Cyprus Mail

Pilot traffic cams recorded 500 violations in just two hours at Nicosia junction (Updated) | Cyprus Mail

Newly installed traffic cameras recorded about 500 violations in just two hours at a busy junction in central Nicosia, prompting the transport ministry to delay the rollout of fines.

There are concerns from some that the delay implies that the government is still not fully prepared for implementation to go ahead, with the bills not yet finalised and as a sticking point remains over car rentals.

The initial phase of the new pilot programme inaugurating the eight traffic cameras – four fixed and four mobile – was set to operate until the end of November, only issuing warnings instead of fines, but will now run until the end of the year.

It may seem counterintuitive that a high number of violations being recorded will lead to a longer period without fines but it has been reasoned that the public may need more time to familiarise themselves with the new system.

Many complained that they were unaware of what will be considered a traffic violation, such as crossing the line at the traffic lights while the light is still red (and therefore making it difficult for pedestrians to cross).

It was noted that from October 25 until January 1, 2022, traffic violations recorded by the cameras will instead only lead to a written warning which will be sent to the driver’s home address. The pilot programme has been billed as a period for the company to iron out any kinks and for drivers to acquaint themselves to the new rules.

A former advisor to the justice ministry on road safety matters expressed his dismay at the delay, saying that December is typically one of the deadliest months as regards road fatalities.

“Many young students return from abroad, there is a lot of drinking and drunk driving on the roads, last year we had nine or so deaths during December – is it really worth the delay?” he told the Cyprus Mail.

It is worth noting however that parliament has still not fully ratified the bills which are set to give the green light for the traffic cameras, with a final vote expected next Friday.

It was reported that the car rentals association has expressed its opposition to the billed legislation as it will shift the burden to the companies should a customer fail to pay a traffic fine recorded by the cameras.

Deputy head of the car rentals association Christakis Petsas told the Cyprus Mail that it is not their duty to chase down tourists who may have racked up fines and to act as police officers.

“We’re not in a position to start blocking credit cards, we’re not going to take on the duties of the state in handling fines potentially months after the incident may have occurred,” Petsas told us.

He detailed other issues of concern to the association, such as many tourists not using credit cards to pay for their rental vehicles and potential police requests for personal information leading to lengthy procedures.

Petsas also wondered why it is not possible for the fines to be collected at the airports.

Highlighting the difficulty in collecting fines, he referenced a recent report by the Audit Office that the state is owed tens of millions in unexecuted fine warrants.

“If they can’t collect these fines from MPs, politically exposed persons (PEPs) and the like, then what chance do we have to collect them from tourists abroad?” Petsas told us.

Haris Evripides of the traffic department told local media that more time has also been given to the public so that an information campaign can get underway, to make sure that people are not caught unawares.

He clarified some confusion over who is responsible for the fine: in the first instance, the fine will be sent to the owner of the car but should a second person – such as a spouse or relative – have committed the offence then it is up to the owner to inform the authorities. Those involved have 15 days to file the notice. Should there be a dispute between the owner and the second person then both are responsible.

Cameras will report speeding, running a red light and crossing a stop line. Once these are detected, other offences such as use of a mobile phone while driving, drivers not wearing a seat belt or bikers not wearing a helmet can also be reviewed.

The current plan for the traffic cameras is for 90 fixed cameras at 30 traffic blackspots islandwide and another 20 mobile cameras for speeding for which police will decide the location and hours of operation on a daily basis.

Source: Pilot traffic cams recorded 500 violations in just two hours at Nicosia junction (Updated) | Cyprus Mail

Four MPs among those who have not paid traffic fines | Cyprus Mail

Four MPs are on the list of high-profile people who have not paid their traffic fines for years.

According to daily Phileleftheros, no action has yet been taken against the exposed politicians who failed to settle their out-of-court fines, but a report drafted by the Audit Office is currently being prepared.

The article reports that a total of 23 warrants are pending against the four MPs and that the fines were issued between 2015 and 2020 for a grand amount of €5,374.

MPs have no immunity for traffic violations, a notion that was made clear a few years back in the case of now independent MP Andreas Themistokleous who was caught speeding more than once.

The former attorney-general had proceeded with the criminal prosecution against Themistokleous who was then with ruling Disy party for six cases of traffic violations, and he was forced to pay the fines.

Meanwhile, 69 police officers are also yet to pay for their traffic violation fines. Police chief Stelios Papatheodorou has instructed the directors of each district to urge them to settle their debts as soon as possible.

At the same time, police spokesman Christos Andreou said on Tuesday that all citizens requiring the assistance of the authorities will be checked first in order to make sure they do not have outstanding traffic fines to pay.

According to Andreou, at the moment, the amount of unpaid traffic violation fines in Cyprus has been estimated at almost €300,000.

Meanwhile, a meeting on the topic, presided by Justice Minister Stefi Drakou, was held on Tuesday, with the aim of finding solutions to mitigate the problem.

As mentioned in the meeting, last year due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and the fact that citizens were not working all the time, actions to collect the fines owed dwindled.

Source: Four MPs among those who have not paid traffic fines | Cyprus Mail

Speeding most common traffic violation | Cyprus Mail

Police booked 21,000 people for speeding in the last two months, traffic police data published on Friday showed.

The data, covering the period between March 24 and May 24, showed that speed was the main traffic violation during that period nationwide, followed by traffic signal violations with 3,300 fines.

Another 1,320 people were booked for driving while holding a mobile phone or another object, and 1,100 fines were issued for those who failed to wear a seatbelt or a safety helmet.

Traffic officers also booked 770 vehicles for illegal parking, 93 drivers for parking in a disabled parking spot and 212 drivers for running a red light.

The data showed that 70 per cent of the people tested for drugs showed a positive result, with 280 positive narcotests after 402 checks.

Eighteen people refused to give a sample. In that case, people are charged in writing and are referred to the court, police said.

Source: Speeding most common traffic violation | Cyprus Mail

Road deaths fell 20% between 2010 and 2020 | Cyprus Mail

Road accidents fell 20 per cent between 2010 and 2020 in Cyprus, data released by the statistical service (Cystat) said on Wednesday.

According to an infographic on road transport and road accidents published in Cystat’s website the number of people killed on the roads fell by 20 per cent, from 60 in 2010 to 48 in 2020.

Even though two-wheelers constitute only 5.3 per cent of all licensed vehicles, they accounted for 31.3 per cent the fatalities in 2020.

At the same time, people over 60 years of age made up 45.8 per cent of those killed in 2020.

According to Cystat the registrations of motor vehicles during the period 2010-2020 ranged between 18,567 in 2013 and 49,450 in 2018.

The share of new vehicles in total registrations shows a downward trend. New vehicles constituted 38.03 per cent of total registrations in 2020 compared to 50.86 per cent in 2010.

In 2010 registrations of hybrid vehicles constituted only 0.43 per cent of total registrations whereas in 2020 this share reached 5.96 per cent.

The proportion of registrations of gasoline vehicles has dropped, while the proportion of diesel vehicles has increased.

In particular, in 2020 registrations of gasoline vehicles constituted 48.52 per cent of the total and of diesel vehicles 44.84 per cent, compared to 68.90 per cent and 30.64 per cent respectively in 2010.

The most common colour of motor vehicles registered in 2020 was white (35.24 per cent).

The number of licensed vehicles in 2020 was 759,268, of which 578,158 were passenger saloon cars.

Also, the average age of licensed passenger cars in 2020 was 13.2 years.

Source: Road deaths fell 20% between 2010 and 2020 | Cyprus Mail

Speed and no seatbelts major factors in sobering road accident stats | Cyprus Mail

Cyprus saw over 10,000 road accidents in 12 years with 729 fatalities

The majority of fatal traffic accidents’ victims in Cyprus are men, while most of those killed failed to wear a seatbelt or a helmet, data from the justice ministry has revealed.

Cyprus saw 729 deaths from traffic accidents in the last 12 years, with 571 or 78 per cent being men, the advisor of the minister of justice for road safety Iasonas Senekis told the Cyprus News Agency this week.

Police recorded 10,542 collisions that resulted in 15,173 injuries in that period.

Of those, 5,950 people were seriously injured and 9,223 were slightly injured. Another 5,687 traffic accidents were recorded without any injuries.

The biggest number of fatalities was recorded in 2008 with 82 victims, while 2013 saw the fewest number of deaths with 43 dying on the road.

“The more one analyses the statistics, one understands that the road does not discriminate. The numbers reveal some truths but only half the picture, because next to each number there is a name,” Sekkeris said.

More than half of the road deaths were recorded in Nicosia and Limassol which counted 221 and 212 deaths respectively.

Car drivers and passengers accounted for 323 of the deaths, with 60 per cent not wearing a seatbelt. Another 224 concerned drivers and passengers on motorcycles with 54 per cent failing to wear a helmet, the official added. The total deaths included 17 children aged under 15.

Concerning the factors that cause overall road accidents, the primary culprit is alcohol with 26 per cent of all accidents. Reckless and careless driving was the main factor in 22 per cent, and speed 12 per cent. But speed was the main factor in one third of the fatal accidents.

“The severity of the collision and consequently the injuries are greatly affected by the speed of the vehicles involved,” Sekkeris said.

Sekkeris cited a study on this by the European transport safety council (ETSC) and the organisation for economic cooperation and development (OECD), as well as the executive seminar for speed and speed management last December.

He added that a Metropolitan police study in London in 2019 showed that speed contributed to 50 per cent of the fatal traffic accidents.

Source: Speed and no seatbelts major factors in sobering road accident stats | Cyprus Mail

Speed limit being reduced to 30km/h on some city streets | Cyprus Mail

The Road Safety Council is considering which busy city streets will have their speed limit reduced from the current 50km/h to 30km/h.

Such a policy shift would be just one of the many sweeping reforms over the last year, from drastically overhauling traffic penalties to eventually reinstalling traffic cameras, in a bid to address Cyprus’ high rate of traffic fatalities.

As it stands, the 30km/h limit only applies near schools, some busy traffic junctions, a couple of streets in Nicosia and parts of the Limassol old town.

“This policy has many benefits, clearly making the roads safer – which will encourage more people to cycle in the cities and make it more likely children can play freely in their neighbourhoods,” Jason Senekkis, road safety advisor to the justice ministry, told the Cyprus Mail on Thursday.

He explained that the 30km/h limit will be introduced gradually, with a few streets to be identified throughout 2021.

The latest traffic committee meeting – attended by municipalities, police officers and ministries – supported the proposal to extend the areas covered by a 30km/h speed limit, with the Road Safety Council to decide which roads the change will apply to.

The plan is based on the Stockholm Declaration, which in March 2020 argued that streets with ‘mixed traffic’ – pedestrians, cars, cyclists, e-scooters and such – are better off with a 30km/h speed limit.

“Brussels has actually introduced the 30km/h speed limit across the city, with only some streets being exempt from this, in Cyprus we’re doing it the opposite way,” he said.

“Currently, [in Cyprus] most city streets are about 50km/h and some will become 30km/h.”

Senekkis also cited reduced pollution as another major benefit to the proposal, both in terms of noise and air quality.

The policy shift would certainly change the pace of city life, but perhaps also the face of it.

There are concerns as to how the speed limit would be enforced, as Senekkis says police should be the last resort.

A variety of methods could be used, he said, such as installing more street furniture, additional parking spaces to help narrow the streets, speed bumps – but this should not be overused, he adds – and even converting others into one-way roads.

Last year, the road transport department carried out a study which found that 70 per cent of road deaths in Cyprus occur within built-up areas. This far exceeds the EU average of 35 per cent.

Source: Speed limit being reduced to 30km/h on some city streets | Cyprus Mail

Rules issued for car imports from UK post-Brexit | Cyprus Mail

The road transport department announced on Tuesday the rules concerning the importation of vehicles from the UK following its EU exit.

According to the department, an M1 category vehicle – passenger car with up to eight seats not including the driver – can be registered in Cyprus provided it is up to five-years-old on the date of arrival, counting from the date it had been registered new in any country.

This does not apply to M1 vehicles already transported or imported to Cyprus from the UK, but not yet registered, or will be loaded for shipping to the Republic by Monday, February 15.

These vehicles can be registered whenever, even if its age exceeds five years.

The department said to register, an M1 vehicle must be accompanied by the original registration certificate (V5c) from the UK, a valid Cypriot MOT, an EU Whole Vehicle Type-Approval (Wvta) or Single Vehicle Approval (SVA) in Cyprus.

A UK registration certificate issued by the end of last year constitutes adequate proof that the vehicle has Wvta, provided it bears the Wvta indication. The indication on the V5c is found at point K – Type of approval number – and is in the form of e.g e4*2007/46*0186*11.

If there is no such indication, to register the vehicle, it must receive the SVA in Cyprus.

Vehicles in the M2 and M3 categories (buses) and N1, N2, and N3 cargo transporters (vans, twin cabs, trucks) are registered irrespective of age, provided they have certification proving their emissions comply with EU standards on the date the vehicle was registered in any country for the first time and they are equipped with ABS.

The UK registration certificate issued by the end of the year is again considered adequate proof as concerns emissions provided the engine is the one stated in the document. If it is a different engine, the department wants a certificate that its emissions comply with the respective EU standards.

Category L vehicles – mopeds, motorcycles, tricycles, and quad bikes – will be registered irrespective of age, provided they are accompanied by the European certificate of conformity in force on the date of its first registration. The department also accepts a copy of the certificate issued by the manufacturer or their representative.

The department also accepts the UK registration certificate issued by the end of the year, which is considered adequate proof that the vehicle has Wvta, provided the document bears the approval of the type of vehicle.

Source: Rules issued for car imports from UK post-Brexit | Cyprus Mail

Fixed airport taxi fares from March 1 | Cyprus Mail


The transport ministry has set fixed fares for taxis travelling to and from the airports, starting on March 1.

The fares include urban and rural taxi services.

In a written statement on Friday, Transport Minister Yiannis Karousos called on taxi drivers to implement the newly set fares “as one of the steps taken to improve the taxi transport sector in Cyprus”.

The decision aimed to solve a longstanding problem mainly concerning the appropriate information of visitors, tourists and others who use the service.

“The establishment of fixed fares is expected to give credibility to taxi transport thus improving professionalism and increase passenger traffic,” the ministry said.

According to the ministry no driver is allowed to charge lower or higher than those rates.

  Taxis carrying up to 4 passengers Taxis carrying 5 – 6  



FromToDay PriceNight PriceDay PriceNight Price
(06.00 – 20.30)(20.30 – 06.00)(06.00 – 20.30)(20.30 – 06.00)
Larnaca AirportNicosia€ 45€ 50€ 60€ 65
Limassol€ 50€ 60€ 65€ 80
Larnaca€ 15€ 20€ 20€ 25
Protaras€ 55€ 65€ 70€ 85
Ayia Napa€ 50€ 60€ 65€ 80
Pissouri€ 80€ 95€ 105€ 125
Paphos, Peyia€ 100€ 120€ 130€ 155
Polis, Argaka, Pomos€ 130€ 150€ 170€ 195
Troodos Area€ 85€ 100€ 110€ 130
Pyrgos Tyllirias€ 160€ 190€ 210€ 245
Paphos AirportNicosia€ 110€ 130€ 145€ 170
Limassol€ 50€ 60€ 65€ 80
Larnaca€ 100€ 120€ 130€ 155
Famagusta Area€ 130€ 150€ 170€ 195
Paphos, Peyia€ 20€ 25€ 25€ 35
Polis, Argakas, Pomos€ 45€ 50€ 60€ 65
Troodos Area€ 55€ 65€ 70€ 85
Pyrgos Tyllirias€ 75€ 85€ 95€ 110

The above fixed fares include the cost of luggage carriage as well as the VAT. Fixed fares also apply on public holidays.

Source: Fixed airport taxi fares from March 1 | Cyprus Mail