President Pavel Signs Overhaul of Driving Rules and Penalties Into Law
Penalties are being toughened for the most serious and dangerous offences. Credit: Freepik.
Prague, Aug 30 (CTK) – President Petr Pavel signed an amendment to the road traffic law earlier today, which brings in a number of changes to driving rules and the penalties for breaking them from next year. The system of penalty points for drivers will change, some fines will increase, and driving will be possible from the age of 17 under the supervision of a mentor. Test-driving licences will also be introduced.
On selected sections of motorways, the amendment will allow the speed limit to be increased to 150 kilometres per hour. Penalties for blocking the passage of trams will be toughened.
According to an earlier statement by Transport Minister Martin Kupka (ODS), penalties are being toughened for the most serious and dangerous offences in relation to the severity of the offence and the level of risk involved.
Drivers will only receive two, four or six penalty points for offences. For drunk-driving, a driver will receive six points instead of the current seven, but will pay an administrative fine of up to CZK 25,000 instead of the current CZK 20,000.
If drivers refuse to take an alcohol test, they face a fine of up to CZK 75,000. They will face the same fine if they drive without a licence or in violation of a ban.
If 12 penalty points are accumulated, the driver will lose their licence, as before. In the case of on-the-spot punishment, the maximum fine has been increased to between CZK 5,500.
According to Kupka, the points system has proven to be an effective way of ensuring greater respect for the rules of the road, both in the Czech Republic and abroad.
The amended law also introduces measures aimed at prevention, Kupka said, such as the possibility of driving a car under the supervision of a mentor from the age of 17. The purpose is to acquire driving skills under the supervision of an experienced driver with integrity, which should contribute to greater safety on the roads. According to Kupka, this has proved successful in Germany and Slovakia, among others.
Another novelty is the probation driving licence. Drivers who have had their licences for less than two years make up only about 3% of the total driver population, but cause 11% of accidents on the road, said Kupka when the change was discussed in the Senate.
Another new feature is that drivers will no longer have to carry their driver’s licence and vehicle certificate with them from next year. This obligation was originally due to expire on 1 July 2025.
The Chamber of Deputies approved the amendment at the end of June.