Germany

Memorandum to the German Presidency of the EU

Memorandum to the German Presidency of the EU

In this briefing, ETSC outlines its recommendations on the key EU road safety policy dossiers to be steered by the German Presidency of the European Union in the second part of 2020.

German Road Safety Council launches campaign for a motorway speed limit

German Road Safety Council launches campaign for a motorway speed limit

The German Road Safety Council, a founding member of ETSC, has launched a call for a generalised speed limit of 130 km/h across the motorway network. In a resolution of the DVR board published yesterday the organisation said: “Speed plays a particularly important role with regard to the distance travelled during the reaction time, and the kinetic energy acting on the vehicle occupants. A reduced speed leads to a shorter stopping distance and reduced accident severity with the same reaction time. It also has […]

COVID-19: Cities adapting road infrastructure and speed limits to enable safer cycling and walking

COVID-19: Cities adapting road infrastructure and speed limits to enable safer cycling and walking

Berlin, Brussels, Milan and Paris have all announced infrastructure changes to promote cycling and walking during the COVID-19 confinement period. Berlin has already temporarily widened cycle lanes to allow safe overtaking with social distancing limits in mind. Milan, meanwhile is closing 35km of streets to car traffic, introducing more 30 km/h limits and converting streets  to cycling and pedestrian-priority. In France, Paris and several other large cities have announced large rollouts of cycle lanes for during and after the lockdown. In the Belgian capital […]

Germany updates road traffic law with new rules on lorry turning speed, legal passing distance for bicycles and new cycling zones

Germany updates road traffic law with new rules on lorry turning speed, legal passing distance for bicycles and new cycling zones

A wide range of new traffic safety measures have been agreed by the German parliament as part of an update to the country’s traffic law. Drivers who park in cycle lanes or follow emergency vehicles through an emergency corridor will now face higher fines, and, for the latter, the possibility of a driving ban. Drivers will also need to use a minimum passing distance for bicycles of 1.5m in urban areas, and 2m out of town – the first time a specific limit has […]

Support for unlimited motorway speeds in Germany is reducing

Support for unlimited motorway speeds in Germany is reducing

Germany’s largest automobile association ADAC is “no longer fundamentally opposed” to motorway speed limits, and the second largest, ACE, actively supports a maximum speed of 130 km/h. The debate over ending unlimited speed on Germany motorways has been on the agenda again for a year, after a government commission on the environment recommended introducing a 130 km/h limit.  So far the government has ruled out the change. But momentum in favour of a limit appears to be growing with the largest automobile club shifting […]

German parliament rejects 130 km/h limit on motorways

German parliament rejects 130 km/h limit on motorways

A proposal by Green MPs to introduce a national 130 km/h top speed limit on motorways in Germany was rejected in a vote in the Bundestag earlier this month. A government commission included the limit as one of a number of options for reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the transport sector in a report published earlier this year. Data analysis by the news organisation Der Spiegel found that the measure could prevent 140 deaths every year. At the time, the German transport minister Andreas […]

Welsh government supports a 20 mph default speed limit in residential areas

Welsh government supports a 20 mph default speed limit in residential areas

The Welsh government has said it supports a default 20 mph (32 km/h) speed limit on residential streets, following positive results from pilot schemes in the cities of Swansea and Cardiff. Wales has had the power to set speed limits in the country since last year, they were previously set by the UK government in London. 20 mph limits are in place in many towns and cities across the UK.  The Mayor of London announced a default 20 mph limit for London as part […]

Coordinated speed checks reach 26 countries

Coordinated speed checks reach 26 countries

Police officers across Europe ran a week of coordinated actions to reduce speeding earlier this month including a 24-hour ‘Speed Marathon’. Figures from last year’s action showed that of 3,244,397 vehicles checked during the 24-hour operation, 92 per cent were driving within the legal speed limit. However, 257,639 speeding offences were detected, either by police officers or by technical means. The ‘Speed Marathon’ concept was devised six years ago in Germany. The concept, which involves inviting members of the public to identify locations where […]

Autobahn speed limit “would save 140 lives”

Autobahn speed limit “would save 140 lives”

Data analysis by Der Spiegel, a German news magazine and website, has concluded that a speed limit applied across all German motorways would save 140 lives a year. The autobahn debate was sparked again in Germany last month after a 130 km/h motorway speed limit was one of a number of measures recommended by a Government commission looking at how to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the transport sector. The transport minister Andreas Scheuer immediately ruled out such a measure, calling it an “unrealistic […]

German expert conference recommends alcohol interlocks

German expert conference recommends alcohol interlocks

A major conference of experts in road safety and traffic enforcement has recommended the introduction of alcohol interlock-based rehabilitation programmes in Germany. The recommendations of the 57th annual “Traffic Day” conference (Deutscher Verkehrsgerichtstag) included the suggestion of the scheme, as an alternative to a driving ban or withdrawal of the driving license, highlighting the educational benefits. The German Road Safety Council (DVR), ETSC’s German founding member, welcomed the recommendations. According to an opinion survey carried out by DVR last year, German drivers underestimate the […]

German drivers “underestimating” drink driving risk

German drivers “underestimating” drink driving risk

The German Road Safety Council (DVR), an ETSC member, says drivers are still underestimating the risks of drink-driving.  According to an opinion survey carried out for DVR by Ipsos in December, one in four respondents would drink one or two glasses of beer at a party within four hours and then drive home by car. DVR recommends a zero alcohol policy when driving.  “It’s best to stick to a clear rule,” said DVR Chief Executive Christian Kellner. “Those who drive, don’t drink; those who drink, […]

Environmental and road safety groups announce the safest and greenest German federal states

Environmental and road safety groups announce the safest and greenest German federal states

Baden-Württemberg, Thüringen and Rheinland-Pfalz are the leaders in sustainable mobility among the federal states of Germany, according to an analysis carried out for the German pro-rail alliance, Friends of the Earth and DVR – ETSC’s German member.  The “Federal State Index – Mobility & Environment 2018/19” looked at official statistics and the direction of transport policies in all 16 German federal states. In efforts by states to reduce the number of dead and seriously injured in road traffic, DVR gave a mixed assessment. “In Germany, […]

Germany launches interactive map of road collisions

Germany launches interactive map of road collisions

Germany’s Federal Statistical Office has launched an interactive map of traffic collisions.  The website enables citizens and researchers to see road sections and sites where most collisions occurred on roads across Germany. The map shows only those incidents involving injuries and where the police were called.  Filters are available to show, for example, collisions involving bicycles or passenger cars and for minor or serious injuries. The “accident atlas” contains information from the statistics of road collisions for the years 2016 and 2017. However, the […]

Aldi Germany will buy new lorries with turning assistant from 2019

Aldi Germany will buy new lorries with turning assistant from 2019

The German supermarket chain Aldi, has said all new lorries added to its fleet from 2019 will be fitted with turning assistant systems. The announcement came following a meeting organised by the German transport minister Andreas Scheuer with industry figures to discuss the issue of collisions caused by lorry drivers failing to see vulnerable road users in their blind spot when turning. The fitting of vulnerable road user detection and warning systems is one of the measures (see below) proposed by the European Commission in […]

3 May 2018 – REVIVE Round table, Luxembourg

3 May 2018 – REVIVE Round table, Luxembourg

The third REVIVE Round table focused on improving post-collision outcomes in Bulgaria, Croatia, Denmark, Germany, Luxembourg, and Romania In the framework of the REVIVE Project, experts from Emergency Medical Services (EMS), Rescue/Fire Service (RFS) and road transport safety representatives from Bulgaria, Croatia, Denmark, Germany, Luxembourg, and Romania met in Luxembourg City on 3 May 2018. They discussed the way forward for improving post-collision response and emergency care accross the EU. The meeting gathered representatives from health agencies, rescue services as well as researchers and other actors […]

Roadworthiness: Commission urges Member States to update vehicle testing rules

Roadworthiness: Commission urges Member States to update vehicle testing rules

The European Commission has requested that six Member States fully transpose into national law rules agreed in 2014 on roadworthiness testing for motor vehicles. The rules, made up of three EU Directives, should have been in place in all Member States by 20 May 2017. To date, however, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Germany, Ireland, Romania and Slovakia have not – or only partially – done so. The Czech Republic, Romania and Slovakia have not adopted, published and communicated to the Commission measures on the […]

Safer speed limits and boost for alcohol interlocks as France announces major road safety push

Safer speed limits and boost for alcohol interlocks as France announces major road safety push

Two lane roads with no separating guard rail in France will have their default speed limit reduced from 90 to 80 km/h and alcohol interlocks will be required for recidivist drink driving offenders as part of the French government’s latest road safety crack-down. The measures, announced by the Prime Minister earlier this month, also include the possibility of suspending the license of a driver using a mobile phone at the wheel. The 80km/h limit has led to a backlash from motoring groups and on […]

Calls to increase education, enforcement and penalties for distracted driving

Calls to increase education, enforcement and penalties for distracted driving

A number of national surveys across Europe have revealed worrying attitudes to the use of mobile devices while driving. Campaigners are calling for better enforcement, higher penalties, technological solutions and education to raise awareness of the risks. A survey carried out by Ipsos in the Czech Republic last Summer found that 36% of drivers admitted using their phone almost every time they get behind the wheel. In Spain, 25% of drivers have admitted to using their phone behind the wheel, similar to the figure […]

Pressure grows for wider use of 30km/h limits in urban areas

Pressure grows for wider use of 30km/h limits in urban areas

Policymakers in Germany, Ireland and Scotland are being asked to support the wider roll out of 30km/h speed limits, especially in urban areas where cars interact with pedestrians, cyclists and other vulnerable road users.  At a high-level event organised by ETSC’s Irish member the Road Safety Authority (RSA) earlier this month, the organisations’s chief executive Moyagh Murdock said despite Dublin’s pioneering rollout of 30km/h limits, the rest of the country was ‘falling behind’ and called for more local authorities to follow the capital’s lead.   ETSC’s German member DVR is also backing […]

Rise of e-bikes and speed pedelecs prompt safety questions in Germany and the Netherlands

Rise of e-bikes and speed pedelecs prompt safety questions in Germany and the Netherlands

Bicycles that offer electric assistance and faster models that can travel at speeds of up to 45km/h are prompting policy changes in EU member states including Germany and the Netherlands.  One in four bikes sold in the Netherlands is either electrically assisted or is a so-called ‘speed pedelec’, now subject to similar legislation to mopeds. According to official data, there are now around 1.4 million electric bikes in the Netherlands.  Dutch research carried out by the SWOV Institute for Road Safety Research has found that while electric bicycles are […]

© 2020 European Transport Safety Council

20 Avenue des Celtes | Brussels | B-1040 | Belgium

t +32 2 230 4106 | f +32 2 230 4215