Speeding rules in Switzerland may be relaxed as part of new proposals
The Transport and Telecommunications Committee (TTC) in the Swiss National Council has submitted a new plan to change how speeding offences are dealt with in the country, arguing the current system is too arbitrary and that drivers in Switzerland should be treated differently when they are caught speeding.
Proposals give judges more of a say on speeding fines
A majority of the TTC voted to change how speeding offences are dealt with in Switzerland. Currently, drivers who dramatically exceed the speed limit on Switzerland's roads and motorways have their driving licence revoked for a minimum of two years, and prison sentences are set at a minimum of one year for the most serious offences.
Committee member and National Councillor Philipp Bregy said in a statement that the current rigid system does not do justice to individual cases. He made the point that “the young racer who races on public roads in his highly tuned car and massively exceeds the maximum speed should not be judged the same as the father-to-be who drives his wife, who is in labour, to the hospital at a higher speed."
The commission hopes to adapt the so-called Via Sicura - the laws defining what punishment is administered - so that judges have more of a say on what sentences are given out to offenders. They also called for the minimum prison sentence for speeding offences to be scrapped and for authorities to be able to withdraw drivers' licences for six months rather than two years.
Swiss politicians to oppose relaxing speeding rules
In response, politicians have argued that reducing the punishments for speeders would send the wrong message. National Councillor Michael Töngi said that nobody accidentally becomes a racer and that “the hurdles for a penalty are very high. For example, you have to drive at over 100 km / h in built-up areas or over 140 out of town. Luckily, few people do that, but those who do it must be clearly sanctioned.”
The commission’s proposal to amend the Via Sicura has now been submitted to the Swiss parliament. Debates on the measures will start in the spring session, set to begin on February 28.