Six road deaths in 10 days: police issue urgent call for driving culture change – Cyprus Mail

The past 10 days saw six road deaths, police said on Sunday, issuing an urgent call for a change in the behaviour of drivers.

After two people – Bruk Mark Christodoulou, 24, and Savvas Charalambous, 75 – lost their lives on Cyprus roads on Saturday night, police issued a desperate call to alert the public that “it is imperative that we change our mentality and culture as regards our driving behaviour.”

The list of road accident victims is growing, the police said, stressing that we can no longer believe ourselves to be untouchable and beyond risk. “We must realise that danger lurks in every centimetre of distance we choose to cover with our car or motorbike.”

Road safety rules must be followed, police said, because it’s “a shame, it’s unfair, to lose human lives on roads.”

It added that it makes daily efforts toward improving road safety. The hundreds of reports made by the police against traffic offences may unnerve the public, but they only serve one goal: “to persuade drivers, through fear if need be, to comply with road safety rules.”

Source: Six road deaths in 10 days: police issue urgent call for driving culture change – Cyprus Mail

Cyprus has lowest number of cyclist deaths in EU – Cyprus Mail

Among EU member states, Cyprus and Luxembourg had the lowest number of cyclists killed in road accidents in recent years, according to figures for 2017 released by Eurostat on Tuesday.

The highest rate is in Romania (10 deaths per million inhabitants) and the lowest rate is zero, recorded in Cyprus (2016 data) and Luxembourg. The EU average was 4 per million inhabitants.

The number of fatalities recorded in road traffic accidents in the EU is estimated to be around 25,000 in 2017, corresponding to 50 fatal accidents per million inhabitants. The annual number of deaths on EU roads has been around 25,000 since 2013, after a steady decline from 43,000 in 2007. In Cyprus, the numbers have also declined over the years, from 83 in 2008 to 53 in 2017.

Passenger car deaths accounted for almost half (46 per cent) of all fatal road accidents in 2017, followed by deaths of pedestrians (21 per cent), motorcyclists (15 per cent), bicyclists (8 per cent) and deaths involving other forms of road transport (10 per cent).

In the EU member states, Bulgaria ranks highest in the passenger car category with 64 deaths per million inhabitants (2016 data), which is almost six times the lowest rate, that of Malta (11, also 2016 data).

The rate of deaths among pedestrians in road traffic accidents is highest in Romania (37 deaths per million inhabitants) and lowest in Denmark (3).

Greece had the highest rate of fatalities in relation to motorcycle accidents (20 deaths per million inhabitants) in 2017. This contrasts with the situation in Bulgaria (2016 data) and Estonia, where the rate is zero.

According to Eurostat, the data have been extracted from the Care database (the Community database on road accidents resulting in death or injury). Care contains detailed data on individual accidents collected by the member states from police and hospital sources.

Source: Cyprus has lowest number of cyclist deaths in EU – Cyprus Mail

Moves afoot to stop tampering with mileage in second-hand cars – Cyprus Mail

Tampering with the mileage of second-hand cars is at last coming to an end, the Cyprus Consumer Association announced on Monday.

According to the announcement, the customs department in a letter dated August 7 informed the association that it would soon include mandatory information regarding used cars which shows the number of kilometres clocked up by the vehicle.

The customs department will make its database available to the road transport department so the information is available when cars are being registered.

If the department finds the vehicle’s odometer has been interfered with, the car will not be registered.

The Consumer Association said tampering with the mileage is not just about misleading consumers in terms of purchase price and maintenance costs, but is also related to issues of road safety and environmental damage.

In a 2018 study on the manipulation of odometers in motor vehicles in the EU, the European Parliament said the practice is widespread in cars traded cross-border in the EU and is estimated to affect up to 50 per cent of cases.

“The total economic costs of odometer fraud in second-hand cars traded cross-border in the EU can be estimated to be at least €1.31 billion, with the most probable fraud rate scenario yielding €8.77 billion of economic loss,” the report says.

There are several reasons, it explains, the first being that the fraud is practically impossible to detect, as the manipulation does not leave any trace in a car’s electronic devices.

New cheap technologies allow easy and cheap tampering of odometers.

Second, the majority of car manufacturers do not install high security protection for odometers that could help strengthen anti-fraud prevention.

Third, many member states do not provide consumers with the necessary tools to enable them to check a second-hand car’s history.

Though odometer tampering is prohibited in most EU countries, sanctions vary, the report warns, and only in five member states can consumers access pre-purchase mileage information, Belgium, the UK, Hungary, the Netherlands and Sweden.

Source: Moves afoot to stop tampering with mileage in second-hand cars – Cyprus Mail

587 drivers caught driving under influence of drugs in 18 months – In-Cyprus.com

Targeted stops by traffic police have led to 587 drivers being caught driving under the influence of drugs since narco tests were introduced 18 months ago, Phileleftheros reports.

It said that in the period of January 21, 2018 to August 13, 2019 a total of 587 drivers tested positive for drugs and were arrested pending a second test. If that result is positive, they are charged.

According to Phileleftheros 97% of those who test positive during the preliminary test are confirmed to have taken drugs by the second test.

It added that the majority were found to be under the influence of cannabis.

Traffic police figures show that seven of the drivers killed on the island’s roads during the same period tested positive for drugs.

 

Source: 587 drivers caught driving under influence of drugs in 18 months – In-Cyprus.com

Paphos-Limassol highway, lane closures – Cyprus Mail

The fast lanes of the Paphos-Limassol motorway will be closed for traffic in both directions on August 29.

The lanes and the exits from the Konia roundabout to Petra tou Romiou will be closed from 9am until 1pm while lighting maintenance will be carried out, the public works department announced.

Traffic will be directed to the slow lanes.

The department apologised for the unavoidable inconvenience and called on the drivers to comply with roads signs and police instructions.

The public can check the progress of the works and its impact on traffic at www.traffic4cyprus.org.cy.

Source: Paphos-Limassol highway, lane closures – Cyprus Mail

MPs call for prosecution of drivers who use hands-free devices (UK)

The Commons transport committee warns that current laws give the ‘misleading impression’ that hands-free use is safe. MPs demand that ministers look at extending the current legislation.

Drivers should be banned from all phone use behind the wheel – including hands-free calls, MPs declare today.

Using technology such as car speakerphones or bluetooth headsets can create the same crash risks as holding a phone, they warn. The Commons transport committee warns that current laws give the ‘misleading impression’ that hands-free use is safe.

Instead, MPs demand that ministers look at extending the current legislation, which only bans use of hand-held phones while driving.

They also want the Government to consider increasing punishments for drivers using mobiles, as well as recruiting more traffic officers or using roadside cameras to catch offenders.

The radical proposal, which will now be examined by the Department for Transport, is likely to be welcomed by road safety groups, particularly as figures suggest the number of crashes involving mobiles is rising.

Source: MPs call for prosecution of drivers who use hands-free devices

Teen critical after motorbike involved in accident – Cyprus Mail

An 18-year-old motorcyclist is in critical condition in Limassol hospital after being involved in an accident on Sunday afternoon in Limassol.

The incident happened at 6.40pm when a car driven by a 36-year-old man collided with the motorbike at the junction of Esperides street and Omonia avenue.

The biker was taken to hospital where he was diagnosed with head injuries and a ruptured spleen.

He underwent surgery and is being treated in the intensive care unit. His state of health is described as very serious.

The driver was tested for alcohol and had a reading of 62µg instead of the 9µg allowed for drivers who have had a licence for less than three years. He also tested positive for drugs.

He was arrested while the causes of the accident are being investigated.

This was the second serious injury in an accident involving a motorbike during the weekend. An 11-year-old girl is in hospital in critical condition at the Nicosia general after the motorbike she was a passenger on crashed into a vehicle on a Limassol road on Saturday evening.

Source: Teen critical after motorbike involved in accident – Cyprus Mail

Motorbike passenger, 11, in critical condition after Limassol crash – Cyprus Mail

An 11-year-old girl is being hospitalised in critical condition at the Nicosia general after the motorbike she was a passenger on crashed into a vehicle on a Limassol road on Saturday evening, with the driver of the motorbike, 25, suffering only minor injuries.

According to the police on Sunday, the collision occurred at 6pm. The vehicle attempted to make a right turn as the motorbike was attempting to overtake it. The bike crashed into the concrete before hitting a pavement.

Neither the driver nor the little girl were wearing a helmet.

The 11-year-old suffered serious injuries and was taken, along with the 25-year-old driver, to the Limassol general hospital.

The girl was diagnosed with severe traumatic brain injury, and her transfer to the Nicosia general hospital was deemed necessary due to the severity of her condition.

The driver of the car tested negative for alcohol.

Source: Motorbike passenger, 11, in critical condition after Limassol crash – Cyprus Mail

Police introduce triple patrols speed checks on highways – In-Cyprus.com

Changes are being introduced in the way police patrols operate both on the highways and in cities.
Shortly after instructing officers not to hide when conducting road inspections, the Traffic Department has been operating with triple patrols for the past three days to make sure drivers do not start speeding after passing the first check.
So far, officers have in fact noticed that, when passing a police patrol, after initially decreasing their speed, drivers would immediately accelerate straight after, thinking they would not find further patrol cars anytime soon.
Here’s how a likely scenario will unfold: there will be three patrol cars, for example on the Nicosia-Limassol highway, all three at different points along the way, so that, if a driver speeds through the first one, he can be easily spotted and stopped by the second or the third one.
The patrol cars will then move to the other side of the motorway to check the traffic going in the opposite direction. In this way, the Traffic Department is hoping to pass the message on to drivers that they must adhere to the speed limits throughout their entire journey and not just when they see a police car on the side of the road.
Two days ago, a driver was reported speeding throughout all three checks.
In the meantime, police officers have also changed they way they conduct traffic checks in cities.
According to the instructions given, drivers will now rarely see police officers at street corners waiting to stop offenders, as they have now started to conduct checks on-the-go.
In just one day under the new traffic policies, 585 drivers in Nicosia and 470 in Limassol have been stopped for various traffic offences.

Source: Police introduce triple patrols speed checks on highways – In-Cyprus.com

Police to crack down on illegal ‘taxis’ – Cyprus Mail

Police will start a campaign to clamp down on the illegal transport of passengers by private drivers on Sunday. The campaign will last until August 30.

It will be carried out in cooperation with the licensing authority at entrance points to the republic, airports and ports, and in the wider Ayia Napa area.

The campaign will target drivers who do not have a permit to operate a taxi but transport passengers for a fee.

Members of the police traffic department and road transport supervisors will check the drivers’ documents and the vehicles.

Source: Police to crack down on illegal ‘taxis’ – Cyprus Mail