The majority of Poles support the substantial rise in fines for traffic offenses that came into effect on Jan. 1, a latest survey conducted on the issue suggests.
Stricter traffic laws will enable a court to impose a maximum fine of €6,600 on dangerous drivers, a dramatic increase on the previous maximum of €1,100. Fines imposed by police officers have also increased from €110 to €1100, or up to €1300 for several offenses.
If a driver exceeds the speed limit by up to 30 km/h, they will be fined €88. If they exceed the limit by between 31 and 40 km/h they will be fined at least €176; 41-50 km/h will involve a €220 fine; 51-60 km/h will incur a €330 fine; 61-70 km/h will be a €440 fine and 71 km/h or more will amount to a €550 fine.
Polling on the issue undertaken by the Institute for Social Research and Market (IBRiS) for the Rzeczpospolita newspaper revealed that 69.1 percent of respondents agreed with the higher fines, believing that the stronger deterrent will improve road safety and force drivers to slow down.
“Just a few days since the new law’s introduction, Poles have evaluated it positively. More than 20 percent of Poles think that higher fines will improve safety and 46.5 believe that it will have a positive impact. Only 25 percent are of the opinion that nothing will change,” the report stated.
75 percent of people aged between 18 and 29 believed that drivers would now slow down. The majority of sceptics towards the changes are among people aged 30 to 39 – more than 50 percent of respondents in the age group questioned the effectiveness of the changes.
Drivers from the middle-aged group are the ones who are most often caught speeding, just above new, young drivers.
Although the number of traffic incidents has been decreasing every year in Poland, the percentage of people dying in road accidents was still the highest in the EU in 2020 alongside Romania and Bulgaria.