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On 14 June, large congestion was created around one of the motorway junctions in the German state of Hesse. The police decided to check whether the drivers standing in the traffic jam had complied with the regulations and created an emergency corridor. The result was shocking.

When the traffic jam arose around the Kirchheimer Dreieck junction in Hesse in mid-June due to increased holiday traffic, the motorway police from Bad Hersfeld took the necessary steps. They checked whether drivers created an emergency corridor on the A4, A5 and A7 motorways that meet at the said interchange. The officers set off in the direction of Kirchheimer Dreieck in a police car with a camera. 

After a detailed analysis of the recording, it turned out that 135 drivers, including 20 foreign truckers, should be banned from driving for a month. What’s more, they also face a fine of € 200.

Severe fines in Germany

Strict penalties apply to drivers exceeding the speed limit both within and outside built-up areas (see the German fines catalogue for details). The new legislation also clarifies the minimum distance that drivers must keep from pedestrians passing through the crossing point, cyclists, e-scooters and other small electric vehicles. It is at least 1.5 m in built-up areas and 2 m outside them.

In addition, drivers who do not comply with the regulations on emergency corridors on motorways and roads outside built-up areas will also be treated more strictly.  As of 28 April, the following penalties are foreseen:

– For failure to create an emergency corridor in Germany, a fine of €200, 2 penalty points and a driving ban for a period of 1 month is envisaged.

– Failure to create an emergency corridor, which will lead to the blocking of the emergency services vehicle, will result in a €240 fine, 2 penalty points and a driving ban for a period of 1 month in Germany.

– For failure to create an emergency corridor leading to danger to life or health, e.g. of a firefighter or an injured person, the person may get €280 fine, 2 penalty points and a driving ban for a period of 1 month.

– For failure to create an emergency corridor leading to property damage, a fine of €320, 2 penalty points and a driving ban for a period of 1 month is envisaged.

– For failure to provide a clear roadway in front of a service vehicle with a blue light and sound signal, a fine of €240, 2 penalty points and a driving ban for a period of 1 month is envisaged.

– For failure to provide a clear roadway in front of a service vehicle with a blue light and sound signal, leading to a threat to life or health of e.g. a firefighter or an injured person, a fine of €280, 2 penalty points and a driving ban for a period of 1 month is envisaged.

– For failure to provide a clear roadway in front of a service vehicle with a blue light and sound signal leading to property damage, a fine of €320, 2 penalty points and a driving ban for a period of 1 month is envisaged.

For unauthorised use of an emergency corridor to get out of the traffic jam the following penalties are foreseen:

– €280 fine, 2 penalty points and a driving ban for a period of 1 month if this hinders the work of the emergency services,

– €300 fine, 2 penalty points and a driving ban for a period of 1 month if the life or health of the injured person or of service personnel has been endangered as a result of this behaviour,

– €320 fine, 2 penalty points and a driving ban for a period of 1 month if this has lead to property damage.

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

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