By Humphrey Carter
THE government this week gave the green light to the new points scheme, as reported by the Bulletin, for drivers in a bid to try and reduce the number of accidents by 40 percent.

The new scheme will be very similar to that in the United Kingdom and, for drivers who eventually lose their 12 points, their licence will be withdrawn. The driver will have to attend a special driving awareness course as well as re-sit his or her driving exam.

Every driver, with over three years on the road, will have a 12 point quota. dDrivers who have only passed their test within a three-year period will have to start with eight, although, drivers who volunteer to attend the driving awareness courses, will be rewarded with an extra four points.

However, drivers can only go on the courses once every two years.
The points deduction system is simple.
For a very serious offence, the drivers will be docked six points, a serious offence will cost the driver four points and minor offences will result in the loss of three or two points.

However, if a driver commits more than one serious offence at the same time, traffic police have the powers to dock the full 12 points and withdraw the driver's license on the spot.

Points will be docked for 46 traffic infractions.
For example, six point deductions correspond to drunk driving, driving under the influence of drugs or refusing to take an alcohol test.
Driving the wrong way, competing in illegal races, driving at speeds of 50 percent above the limit can also lead to a six point deduction. Four points will be docked for, example, driving a vehicle which has failed its ITV (MOT), carrying more passengers than the vehicles is designed for, driving an unregistered vehicle or driving with a licence that has expired.

Tossing a cigarette butt or any other item which could start a fire or cause an accident will also be sanctioned with a four point deduction. Failing to halt at a stop sign, dangerous driving and overtaking when prohibited will also result in similar sanctions. The new points system will come into effect at the start of next year. Under new EU laws being discussed by EU transport ministers, British drivers on the continent who commit a traffic offence, for example here in Majorca, will find the corresponding sanction or fine following them home to the UK, where it will be enforced.


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