Bulgaria’s PM: Large-scale road safety checks have begun

Joint road safety inspections by six institutions have already begun all over Bulgaria, following a decision at an interdepartmental meeting last week, Prime Minister Nikolai Denkov told a Cabinet meeting on June 21, the government media service said.

He said that the checks would be “constant”, not on a campaign basis.

According to preliminary figures published by the European Commission in February, in 2022 Bulgaria had the second-highest road death rate in the European Union, at 78 per million inhabitants.

Posting provisional data on June 21, the Interior Ministry said that so far in 2023, a total of 217 people had died in accidents on Bulgaria’s roads, 10 more than at the same point in 2022.

Denkov said that at the meeting held on June 16, other actions had been decided on.

The institutions involved were paying special attention to high-risk sections of the roads, as well as measures regarding safe driving.

Denkov said that he would review progress on the topic of road safety every month.

The large-scale inspections are being carried out by teams from the Interior Ministry, Motor Vehicle Administration agency, the Road Infrastructure Agency, the National Revenue Agency, the Customs Agency and the State Road Safety Agency.

In a separate statement, the Interior Ministry said that the inspections would involve motorists would be stopped and diverted for inspection by the officials from the departments involved.

“The emphasis in the inspection is on compliance with the rules regarding the use of safety systems – seat belts, including by passengers in the back seat of cars, safety systems for children, as well as by passengers in buses and vans,” the statement quoted Chief Inspector Maria Boteva as saying.

Another focus of the checks is for unlicensed drivers.

A further focus is not allowing motorists to drive after having consumed alcohol or narcotics, monitoring correct transportation of passengers and cargo, prevention of overloading of vehicles, observance of rest time by bus and lorry drivers, and that documents for transporting cargo and passengers are in order, the Interior Ministry said.

(Photo: Interior Ministry press centre)

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