Speeding crackdown in Spain will target foreign drivers

by Emily DUNBAR on August 20, 2010

UK drivers have become the latest targets in a new scheme run by Spanish authorities as a means to clampdown on foreigners speeding.

With fines ranging from £85 to £500, motorists will be caught on cameras set up in different areas around the selected cities and then fined on-the-spot by nearby awaiting patrol cars. The authorities have said they will target foreign licence plates in an effort to cut down on foreign drivers returning home without paying their fines.

Visiting motorists without Spanish licences plates could face having their vehicle impounded if they are unable or unwilling to pay the fine immediately. New camera technology in four selected regions on the Costas will be used to identify speeding motorists and alert nearby awaiting police cars. Once identified, the closest patrol vehicle will pull the motorist over and issue a ticket.

Prior to the new system, all cars were processed in the standard fashion with drivers receiving a ticket mailed to their residence with the fine included. Now, however, the new system will require drivers with foreign plates pay fines on-the-spot, while cars with local plates will be allowed to continue in the old method.

Spanish authorities will pilot the scheme in four different areas and then expand the initiative if it is successful. Most of the targeted areas are in the Costas, where tourism during the summer holidays is quite high.

One million Britons are estimated to own property in Spain, particularly in that area, and many opt to drive their UK registered vehicles instead of obtaining local plates. The move could see more Brits faced with speeding penalties as their foreign plates become a target of the crackdown.

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