Nicolas Maeterlinck

427,859 foreign motorists issued with speeding fines in 2018

There was a big increase in the number of fines issued by the Federal Police Service to foreign motorists for speeding on Belgian roads in 2018. Four out of five foreign motorists pay the fines without any further action being taken. According to figures from the Federal transport Minister François Bellot (Francophone liberal) that form to basis of an article in Saturday’s edition of the financial daily ‘De Tijd’, the number of foreign motorists fined for speeding on Belgian roads was up by well over half in 2018 compared with the figures for 2017. Furthermore the proportion of foreign drivers fined also increase to 11% of the total number of motorists fined for speeding.

 

 

According to the Federal Police’s figures there were just over 3 million speeding offences committed by motorists in Belgium in 2017. Of these 264,887 were committed by the drivers of foreign registered vehicles. The figures for 2017 were pretty much in line with the figures for previous years.

However, in 2018, 3.74 million speeding fines were issued, of which 427,859 (11%) went to the drivers of vehicles registered in other 

Drivers from neighbouring countries

Not surprisingly given the proximity of their home countries ,drivers from The Netherlands, France, Germany and Luxembourg are the foreigners most often caught speeding on our roads. However, vehicles registered in Poland, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Romania, Italy and Spain are also among the foreign vehicles most often caught exceeding the speed limit here. Edward Landtsheere of the Federal Justice Department told the paper that thanks to cooperation between EU countries it is becoming more and more difficult for errant motorists to escape punishment for traffic offences committed in other EU member states. 

The Eucaris databank enables EU countries to exchange data relating to vehicle licence plates. The fines are issued via an automated system with the motorist receiving a letter informing them that they have been find in the language of the (part of the) country in which their vehicle is registered. For example a Fleming caught speeding in Spain receives a letter in Dutch and an Austrian caught speeding in Belgium receives a letter in German.

Four out of five foreign drivers fined pay up them without any further action having to be taken. If this is not the case the Belgian authorities enlist the help of the police in the speeding motorist’s home country.