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Traffic rules and fines

In each country, local traffic rules apply, and there is a separate procedure for fines for violations and preventive measures for road traffic accidents.

We recommend that you carefully read the current traffic rules, as well as the system of fines and restrictions in the country you are interested in.

AUSTRIA

When driving to Austria by car, remember that in accordance with local laws, you cannot carry more than 10 liters of gasoline with you in a canister. Most gas stations in Austria are open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Sunday. There are also gas stations around the clock, but they are usually located on freeways.  

As in other European countries, Austrian traffic regulations oblige drivers and passengers to use seat belts. Children under 12 years of age, as well as height up to 150 cm, must be transported using special child restraints. In exceptional cases, you can fasten children with a seat belt designed for an adult passenger, if the size and adjustment of this belt corresponds to the height of the child (in particular, the belt should not pass through the neck).

Austrian law allows talking on a cell phone while driving only using the hands-free system. However, in this country the concepts of “stationary device” and “mobile device” are legally separated. The stationary device should include a fixture for mounting the telephone, so that the driver can use it without being distracted from driving. For a conversation on a cell phone without a hands-free device, a fine of 20 euros is imposed on the driver.

At roundabouts, unless otherwise specified by road signs or other means of traffic management, vehicles entering the circle have an advantage. Be careful: in many countries the situation is either the opposite (cars in a circle have an advantage), or this moment is not specified in the Rules of the Road (as, for example, in Russia).

Driving while intoxicated is prohibited. The maximum allowable level of alcohol in the blood of the driver is 0.5 ppm. For driving a vehicle while intoxicated, a fine of 220 to 5800 euros is imposed on the driver or it may be deprived of the right to drive a car.

The rules for parking vehicles in Austria have their own characteristics. In particular, in many Austrian cities there are short-term parking zones in the territory of which it is allowed to leave the car for a period of half an hour to three hours. Such a zone may include several nearby streets, so always pay attention to the appropriate road signs or information signs.

Areas where vehicles are prohibited from parking are indicated by a yellow zigzag line for road markings.

To drive on toll roads in Austria, you must have a sticker - a document confirming the payment of road tax. It can be purchased at gas stations, as well as at the border. A document valid for ten days will cost you 5 euros.

Please note that on some roads (mountain, snowy, etc.), all vehicles are forbidden to drive, except for vehicles with winter equipment. Such places are indicated by appropriate road signs.

Tires with a tread depth of less than 4 mm are considered summer under Austrian law.

The use of anti-slip chains is not prohibited when there is a serious need, as well as in places where they do not damage the road surface. They can even be worn on summer tires, but in any case, on all driving wheels of the vehicle. In some places (indicated by special road signs) the use of anti-slip chains is mandatory.

In the settlements of Austria, cars are allowed to drive at a speed of no more than 50 km / h, and outside the settlements - no more than 100 km / h. On highways, you can reach speeds of up to 130 km / h. However, there are roads on which you cannot go faster than 110 km / h from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. If you exceed the speed by no more than 20 km / h, you may be fined 30 euros.

ENGLAND

The main feature of England's traffic is that it is left-handed. Needless to say, what inconvenience this brings to the Russian driver! We hasten to reassure you: as practice shows, after a relatively short period of time человек адаптируется к новым условиям и успешно управляет автомобилем. К тому же в Англии дорожная разметка отличается высокой информативностью, а потому оказывает существенную помощь участникам дорожного движения.

Before you start driving, be sure to look to the right and look in the right rear-view mirror (in principle, drivers should do the same in Russia, but not on the right, but on the left). Overtaking in England must be done to the right of the overtaking vehicle.

At roundabouts, vehicles that are on your right take precedence. The exact opposite of the Russian traffic rules, in particular the well-known “interference on the right” rule.

Vehicles that drive on major roads always take precedence over vehicles on minor roads. If a white strip of road marking is applied across the roadway, this means that it is necessary to give way to vehicles moving along a intersected road.

As you know, in some states with right-hand traffic, traffic permits are allowed to turn right even at a red traffic light, provided that other road users are given an advantage. There is a misconception that in England you can turn the red light to the left in the same way. Remember: this is not so, for such a violation you may be subjected to a large fine.

In England, drivers of vehicles are obliged to give way to pedestrians at pedestrian crossings (as in Russia, crossings are denoted by a zebra). Failure to do so will result in a fine.

Drivers and passengers of vehicles must wear seat belts. This also applies to passengers in the back seat (in the presence of seat belts provided by the vehicle structure).

In the settlements of England, you can drive at speeds up to 30 mph, on other roads - no more than 60 mph, on highways and carriageways with two-way traffic - up to 70 mph. Changing the speed limit can be done quite often, so always pay attention to the appropriate traffic signs.

Oddly enough, but in England there is no special traffic police. An ordinary police squad arrives at the scene of a traffic accident. The duty to control the speed limit is also assigned to the police. Other traffic management issues are dealt with by the traffic inspectorate for the local municipality.

Vehicle parking rules have their own characteristics. If along the edge of the carriageway a double continuous line of road marking is applied - it means that parking in this place is prohibited around the clock. The single yellow marking line has the same meaning, but parking can be allowed at this location in accordance with special notifications. If during parking it is necessary to observe some special rules (method of setting the vehicle, etc.), then the corresponding road signs will indicate this.  Payment for parking in many places is done using parking meters that issue a ticket to the driver with a mark on the parking time. Most of them accept coins of denomination of 20, 50 pence and 1 pound.

In central London (like many other English cities) vehicle parking is very limited. You may encounter traffic jams. Therefore, if there is no special need for a car, it is better to go there by metro.

Even paid parking in England is not always guarded. Free parking lots are located mostly far from the city center, and leaving a car on them is allowed for no more than two hours. In many places you can see a road sign with the words Residents parking. It means that in this place parking is allowed only for citizens permanently residing nearby.

For violation of parking rules, a car can be picked up on a tow truck, put a blocker on wheels or even puncture a wheel (such authorities are vested in traffic inspectors). Of course, the driver or the owner of the car will have to pay an impressive fine.

In general, traffic in England is organized at a fairly high level. The road system is thoughtful and convenient. Even small roads have quality coverage. To prevent traffic jams, there are many road junctions, both regulated and unregulated, including multilevel ones. Places where traffic jams may occur are indicated by the appropriate traffic signs.

In general, there are few traffic signs. For example, the “Main road” sign is missing, and the “Give way” sign is very rare, and the appropriate road markings (in the form of a triangle) are usually used instead. Traffic lights, in contrast, in the settlements there are a large number. By the way, often at regulated pedestrian crossings, a pedestrian must press the traffic light switch button.

Talking on a cell phone while driving is permitted only using the hands-free system. Violators are fined £ 30.

BELGIUM

When traveling on the roads of Belgium, you must remember that this is a country with a long tradition of strict observance of the Rules of the road. Therefore, the sanctions for violations here are quite strict, and the traffic police are vigilant.

All drivers and passengers must wear seat belts. In some cases (with the appropriate medical prescription), an exception is made for pregnant women. Children under 12 years old are not allowed to transport in the front seat of the car, if there are empty seats in the back seat. Another requirement regarding the transport of children is the mandatory use of special child restraints.

When driving in rain, snow, fog, or when visibility is less than 100 m, Belgian traffic regulations oblige drivers to turn on the rear fog lights.

As in other countries, in Belgium it is forbidden to drive a vehicle while intoxicated. The maximum allowable alcohol content in the blood of the driver is 0.5 ppm. This is not the strictest standard - in some countries this indicator is limited to 0.2 ppm.

The Belgian road legislation categorically prohibits vehicle drivers from using radar detectors and other similar equipment. Failure to comply with this requirement will result in a large fine. The legislation even allows the perpetrator to be arrested for a term of fifteen days to three months. If the driver has committed this violation repeatedly, then the sanctions will be two times stricter.

 Signpost in Belgium

The maximum permissible speed in the settlements of Belgium is 50 km / h, and outside the settlements - 120 km / h. The driver of the vehicle is obliged to have with him and at the request of the traffic police and other authorized persons to present the following documents for inspection:

·    international driving license;

·    technical passport for the vehicle;

·    car transport insurance (green card - "green card");

·    passport.

Belgian "brick" is similar to Russian

The size of fines for minor violations of the Rules of the Road ranges from 19 to 140 euros. Remember that if you do not pay the fine within a month, its amount automatically increases 2.5 times.

GERMANY

In Germany, both drivers and passengers of vehicles must wear seat belts. As for the transportation of children, the Rules of the road provide for the following procedure:

·   children under 12 years of age, whose height does not exceed 150 cm, can only be transported using special child restraints;

·    children over the age of 12 years old, but shorter than 150 cm or children under the age of 12 but shorter than 150 cm can be transported without the use of special child restraint devices, however, children must always wear seat belts.

Roundabouts in Germany are indicated by a blue sign with three white curving arrows. At such intersections, unless otherwise prescribed by road signs or other means of traffic management, vehicles in a circle have an advantage.

German traffic regulations prohibit drivers from using the direction indicators when entering a roundabout.

Particular attention in Germany should be given to traffic signs restricting the permissible speed. For example, in settlements there is often a sign prohibiting cars from moving at a speed of more than 30 km / h.

In some areas of Germany, in places where various children's institutions are located, drivers are obliged to reduce the speed of the vehicle to the speed of walking.

On German roads, in the absence of additional restrictions, the maximum permissible speed is:

·    in settlements - 50 km / h;

·    outside settlements - up to 100 km / h;

·    on highways - up to 130 km / h.

Driving while intoxicated is prohibited. The maximum allowable rate of alcohol in the driver’s blood is 0.5 ppm.

The driver must have with him and present the following documents for verification:

·    international driving license;

·    technical passport for the vehicle;

·    car insurance (green card).

Fines

For exceeding the maximum permissible speed by 25 km / h, the driver is subject to a fine of? 200. If you drive at a speed that is more than 30 km / h higher than the maximum allowed, then you can be fined up to? 240. Exceeding the permissible speed of 40 or more kilometers per hour is punishable by a fine of? 40 or by deprivation of the right to drive a vehicle for a period of one month. A driver may be fined or deprived of a driver’s license for a long term for driving while intoxicated.
Fines, the amount of which does not exceed? 150, a traffic policeman can take on the spot. Larger fines should be paid at the bank institution no later than seven days from the date of imposition.

In Germany, there are a great many pointers (to be precise - 648), which in total give about 2000 different combinations. Most of them are endowed with clarifying functions: the driver is explained in detail where to go, what is the order of traffic in the lanes, in what place you can turn around, etc. In addition, distance signs to settlements are very often installed on the tracks.

SPAIN

When traveling in Spain, remember: drivers and passengers of vehicles equipped with safety belts must be fastened. Carriage of children is permitted only with the use of special child restraints appropriate for the age, weight and size of the child.

In Spain, at roundabouts, vehicles in a circle have an advantage, unless otherwise specified by traffic signs or other means of traffic management.

The Spanish Rules of the Road prohibit talking while using a mobile phone while driving, even with the hands-free system. Rather, this system can be used, but without headphones, but only if there is a speakerphone. For violation of this requirement, the driver can be fined about 90 euros.

Special requirements apply to the transportation of bulky goods. Such baggage (bicycle, small boat, etc.) should be secured to the rear or top of the vehicle, but not to the side. Any cargo that stands for the dimensions of the vehicle must be marked with a warning sign (minimum size - 50 × 50 cm) with red and white stripes. If the luggage protrudes beyond the dimensions of the vehicle over its entire width, then it is indicated by two warning plates on different sides, fixed so that the hatching on them looked like an inverted letter V. When driving in the dark and in low visibility conditions, the load must additionally indicated by a red light.

Naturally, Spain's traffic regulations prohibit driving while intoxicated. The maximum allowable alcohol content in the driver’s blood is 0.5 ppm.
The driver must have with him and present the following documents for verification:

·    international driving license;

·    technical passport for the vehicle;

·    car insurance (green card).

In accordance with the Spanish traffic rules, the car must have spare bulbs, as well as two emergency stop signs in the form of red triangles to indicate the vehicle in case of emergency or emergency. In the absence of emergency stop signs, a fine of up to 9 euros is imposed on the driver.

A characteristic feature of the organization of traffic in Spain is the placement of traffic lights not only on special racks, but also high above the roadway. You can’t notice them out of habit, especially if the sun shines brightly towards you. This, however, will not serve as an excuse for traveling to a prohibitory traffic signal - the offender will be fined.

The Spanish temperament leaves its mark on the behavior of drivers on the road: they are far from always disciplined and tolerant of other road users. Do not be surprised when impatient car beeps start coming to you from all directions, if you do not immediately start driving at a green traffic light. Yes, and Spanish drivers “blink” their headlights for and without reason: this could be a warning about the traffic police ahead, a demand to give way, and an expression of discontent.

In settlements, vehicles are allowed to park on even days - on the side of the road with even numbers, on odd days - on the opposite side. It is forbidden to park on the sidewalks marked with yellow road markings, as well as in the area of ​​the relevant prohibition signs. It’s quite difficult to park in large Spanish settlements - as a rule, places are occupied. For several hours, the car can be left in special paid parking lots, which are indicated in blue (many of them are equipped with parking meters). If you leave the car for a long time, it is recommended to use the services of an underground guarded parking lot. Please note that for violating the parking rules you will not only be fined, but even in your absence they may tow the car to the penalty area (of course, at the expense of the owner). To subsequently pick up the car, you will not only have to pay an impressive amount, but also go through a number of bureaucratic procedures, which will take a lot of time. Gas stations that operate around the clock are available in large towns and on freeways. The cost of one liter of 95th gasoline is about 0.7 euros.

You can pay for the use of toll roads both in cash and with a plastic card. Toll price varies from 1.5 to 3 euros. 
Движение транспортных средств в населенных пунктах The movement of vehicles in settlements of Spain is allowed at a speed of not more than 50 km / h, outside settlements - no more than 90-100 km / h. On highways, you can reach speeds of up to 120 km / h.

Most Spanish characters are similar to Russian.

Traffic police have the right to take fines for violation of the Rules of the road, the amount of which does not exceed 350 euros, on the spot. As for foreign citizens, they must pay fines on the spot, and if this is not possible, provide information about the person who can guarantee the payment of the fine (a kind of guarantee). Please note that in Spain, persons who have not paid a fine for violating the Rules of the Road in a timely manner can confiscate the vehicle as collateral until the debt is fully repaid.

ITALY

In Italy, on highways and in most major cities, there are 24-hour gas stations. The remaining gas stations operate from 7.00 to 12.30 and from 15.30 to 19.30. Sunday is a weekend for many gas stations.

All high-speed roads in Italy are paid. You can pay for the use of roads using both plastic cards and cash.

Non-payment by road in Italy is punishable strictly. In accordance with the local rules of the road for such a violation an imposing fine is imposed on the perpetrator, the minimum amount of which is? 300. Therefore, before the end of the trip, be sure to keep a receipt of payment.

As in Russia, while driving in Italy, talking on a cell phone is only possible using the hands-free system. 

Italian roads are characterized by roundabouts. Remember: unless otherwise prescribed by road signs or other means of traffic management (traffic lights, markings, etc.) - vehicles in a circle have an advantage. However, in real road conditions, this provision of traffic rules is often ignored, so always be careful. In Russia, there is no such reservation in the Rules, and in the absence of road signs and other means of traffic organization, you must pass a roundabout in accordance with the rules for driving unregulated intersections.

The speed limit operating in Italy provides for movement in settlements with a speed of no more than 50 km / h, and outside settlements - from 90 to 110 km / h. The maximum permitted speed on highways is 130 km / h. 
The rear fog lights on vehicles may only be used if the visibility of the road in one direction is not more than 50 m.
The stopping and parking rules in Italy have characteristic features. In particular, parking spaces may be indicated in different colors:

·    blue bar - paid parking;

·    white - free;

·    yellow - for buses, taxis, etc. vehicles.

Parking is prohibited in places marked with a black and yellow stripe.

In some Italian settlements there are so-called "green spaces" for parking. On weekdays from 9.30 to 16.00 parking is prohibited. 

In Italy, the driver is required to have and present the following documents for inspection:

·    international driving license;

·    technical passport for the vehicle;

·    car insurance (green card).

In accordance with Italian traffic regulations, the vehicle must have spare bulbs, as well as two emergency stop signs in the form of red triangles to indicate the vehicle in case of emergency or emergency.

If you had to leave the car on a motorway or other road (for example, if a malfunction occurs), be sure to use a special reflective vest in yellow or orange, which should be in each car - this is the requirement of Italian traffic rules.

Traveling to a prohibition signal of a traffic light or traffic controller in Italy is punishable by a fine of up to 65 euros. For driving while intoxicated, penalties start at 328 euros. If you exceed the maximum permitted speed by no more than 10 km / h, you will be fined 22 euros. Exceeding speed by no more than 40 km / h is punishable by a fine of up to 131 euros. 

POLAND

Since 2006, strict road safety regulations have been enacted in Poland.

      Drivers and passengers of all vehicles without exception must wear seat belts. This applies to passengers in the rear seats of cars, and to passengers in buses.

The following speed limits apply in Poland:

·    within settlements - no more than 60 km / h;

·    in residential areas and in courtyards - no more than 20 km / h;

·    outside settlements on motorways for cars, trucks with a maximum permissible weight of not more than 3.5 tons, motorcycles - up to 130 km / h;

·    on two-lane expressways - up to 110 km / h;

·    on single-lane expressways or on expressways having one lane for traffic in each direction - up to 100 km / h; on other roads - up to 90 km / h;

·     for vehicles of other categories on the highway, high-speed road or on a two-lane road with at least two lanes intended for traffic in both directions - 80 km / h; on other roads - 70 km / h;

·    when towing vehicles in settlements - no more than 30 km / h, outside settlements - no more than 60 km / h.

On Polish highways, towing vehicles is allowed only to the nearest exit or a place intended for vehicle repairs and passenger service  
In Poland, drivers are required to turn on dipped headlights or side lights around the clock from October 1 to March 1.

Drivers of all vehicles must give way to pedestrians at the pedestrian crossing. The latter are well aware of this and feel themselves at the crossings as full owners: many of them do not even bother to look around, before stepping on the roadway. This must be taken into account, since for many Russian drivers this behavior of pedestrians may be unexpected. Remember that not giving pedestrians an advantage in Poland is strictly punished.

When driving on a motorway or other expressway, remember that stopping on the sidelines is strictly prohibited, except in exceptional cases (vehicle breakdown, driver’s poor health, etc.). Stopping and parking are allowed only in designated places.

The Polish Road Rules categorically prohibit the use of radar detectors and similar devices, which create obstacles to the measurement of speed by traffic police. Every car moving on Polish roads must have a medical kit and a fire extinguisher.

Traffic signs operating on the territory of Poland are for the most part similar to Russian ones (of course, the graphic design may have some differences). True, there are signs unfamiliar to Russians: for example, "Parking for a certain person" or "Parking for cars whose owners are in the building." These signs allow parking of vehicles only for certain categories of citizens.

PORTUGAL

 Most of the roads in Portugal are paid: the fare is 0.1–1.5 euros (depending on how far you have to travel). Money is charged at the entrance to the track.

As in a number of other European countries, round-the-clock gas stations are available mainly in large towns and highways.

The norms of alcohol content in the blood of the driver are one of the most stringent not only in Europe but also in the world: the maximum allowable value is 0.2 ppm. If the examination shows the excess of this level, the driver will be fined in the amount of 120 to 1800 euros. If there is more than 1.2 ppm of blood alcohol in the driver, they may be imprisoned.

Each driver must have the following documents with him:

·    international driving license;

·    "Green card";

·    technical passport for the vehicle;

·    personal passport.

In settlements of Portugal traffic is allowed at a speed of up to 50 km / h, outside settlements - from 90 to 100 km / h (depending on the particular road, current road conditions, as well as other factors), on expressways and highways - up to 120 km / h. Speeding by no more than 20 km / h is punishable by a fine of 60 euros.

Drivers with a driving experience of less than one year can drive at a speed of no more than 90 km / h. At the same time, the car must be marked with the corresponding identification mark in the form of a yellow circle with the number 90 in the center.

Parking in Portugal is permitted exclusively in the direction of travel.

USA

Traffic regulations may vary by state. Therefore, before you go on a road trip in this country, study the traffic rules of the states that you plan to visit. It is extremely difficult to hide the fact of violation of the Rules of the Road in the USA, since almost everything is recorded by cameras and cameras.

In the USA, it is customary to measure distance in feet or miles, and the speed of vehicles, respectively, in miles per hour.

Each state has its own speed limit system, information about it is available on road signs. As a rule, in residential areas, the maximum speed of vehicles cannot be more than 25-30 mph, on freeway-type roads (designed to travel long distances, there are usually no traffic lights or intersections) - 65 (less often 50) miles per hour. Highways in the United States are equipped with a large number of informative signs.

As you know, special school buses, painted in yellow, are used to transport schoolchildren in America. School buses enjoy a huge number of benefits on the road. When such a vehicle is stopped for boarding or alighting children, special lights come on and vehicles nearby must stop moving. This also applies to cars on the opposite side, if in the middle of the road there is no dividing strip or other artificial separation.         American law is the most thoroughly fighting drunk driving. In such situations, not only the immediate culprit can be brought to justice, but also those who did not prevent him from driving while intoxicated or helped him.

The struggle with drunk driving sometimes takes funny forms. American road signs look different than in Russia, but, on the other hand, are more understandable.

This is largely due to the fact that many of them have specific labels. For example, a traffic sign restricting the speed of movement is made in the form of a white rectangle with the inscription in black: “SPEED LIMIT 70” (literally: speed limit - 70 mph). The “No entry” sign looks almost the same as in Russia: the inscription “DO NOT ENTER” is only added to its white stripe. There are signs well-known to Russians “Traffic without stopping is prohibited” (STOP), “Follow the road” (with the inscription on the triangle “YIELD”), etc.

FRANCE

When driving on French roads, drivers and passengers of vehicles must wear seat belts. Children under 10 years old must be transported in the back seat. Children under 10 years old can be transported in the front seat of the car using a special child restraint in the following exceptional cases:

·    when all the seats in the back seat are occupied by other children who are also under 10 years old;

·    when there is no back seat in the car.

At roundabouts, unless otherwise prescribed by road signs or other means of traffic management, vehicles in a circle have an advantage.

Driving while intoxicated is strictly prohibited. The alcohol content in the driver’s blood should not exceed 0.5 ppm.

Most suburban highways in France are paid. Upon entering the country you must get a special ticket, the validity of which is limited to two hours. Roads for which there is no charge are indicated in green.

In the settlements of France there is a speed limit of 50 km / h. Outside of these, drivers are allowed to reach speeds of up to 90 km / h, and on highways - up to 110 km / h. The fastest in France are toll roads: they are allowed to drive at speeds up to 130 km / h. Note that similar restrictions apply in several other European countries.

Each driver must have:

·    international driving license;

·    technical passport for the vehicle;

·    "Green card".

In accordance with the French Rules of the Road, the operation of vehicles from November 1 to March 31 is permitted only with the use of special winter tires. You should take into account the peculiarity of traffic rules in France, which relates to the rules of parking vehicles. If the road sign contains the numbers 1–15 or 16–31, then parking is prohibited on this side of the road during these days of the month.

For exceeding the maximum permitted speed by more than 20 km / h, but less than 40 km / h, a fine is imposed with a lower bar of 135 euros. Speeding more than 50 km / h is punishable by a fine of 1,500 euros. If the driver’s blood alcohol content exceeds the permissible level of 0.5 ppm but is less than 0.8 ppm, he will be punished with a fine of 135 euros. If the driver’s blood contains more than 0.8 ppm of the offender, a fine of up to 4,500 euros is expected. In addition, the driver may be deprived of the right to drive a vehicle, as well as imprisoned.

 

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