EU plan tackles driving offences

An electronic data exchange system is being introduced to enforce penalties for driving offences across EU member countries.

MEPs have backed the plans in an attempt to reduce the number of motorists breaking motoring laws and assuming they will not be caught because they are on "foreign" number plates.

The legislation, which still needs to be approved by national governments in Europe, will be used to block loopholes in following up offences across EU borders.

Brian Simpson, Labour MEP and transport spokesman in the European Parliament, said: "It is nonsense that EU citizens cannot be punished for reckless driving simply because they happen to do it in another member state. We need to tighten enforcement laws across the EU if we are really serious about improving our road safety record."

He added: "I think it is important that we also have the possibility to extend cross border enforcement of traffic offences in future to other offences like drug driving and non payment of congestion charges".

The legislation will first target EU motorists for speeding, drink-driving, not using a seatbelt and failing to stop at red lights, but it may eventually be widened to include all motoring offences.

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