France – road deaths increase as speeds creep up

  • January 28, 2016

For the first time in 35 years, road deaths in France have increased for a second year running. The rise in deaths has come as mean speeds have increased by between 1 and 4 km/h, according to analysis by the National Observatory for Road Safety (ONISR).

The rise in speeds over the last two years also reverses a ten-year fall that occurred following the introduction of an extensive national safety camera network.

ETSC’s member organisation Association Prévention Routière says part of the problem is a loophole in enforcement of speeding penalties when the vehicle driven is owned by a company.  The National Road Safety Council (CNSR) said last year that company car drivers rarely face losing points on their license, but so far the government has failed to address the problem.

Despite the worrying rise in speed and deaths, some parliamentarians are calling for a further weakening of the system by ending penalties for infractions of less than 10 km/h above the limit.