New Year "Gifts" from Traffic Police / News / News agency Inforos
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New Year "Gifts" from Traffic Police

Starting from January 1, 2006, a new Traffic Code comes into force in Russia. Amendments have been made to several sections of the code.

First, from January 1, 2006, all drivers have to switch on the lower beam outside city limits in daytime. However, it is not a Russian invention by far, as in many European countries this rule has been in force for decades. In 2003 a similar requirement was written in the traffic code in Byelorussia, but it remained in force for only one year. The Traffic Safety Department of the Russian Interior Ministry believes there are all the requisites for the use of outboard lights in daytime, as Article 12.20 of the Administrative Offenses Code (AOC) envisions fines of 50 Rubles for breaching the rules of using lights.

Second, children of up to 12 years of age must be transported only in special seats.

Third, unauthorized tuning of lighting devices is prohibited. Only white and yellow fog lights, orange and yellow turning lights and white headlight are allowed. Other lighting elements should be only in red. Incidentally, many American cars brought to Russia under "grey" imports schemes are provided with "incorrect" – according to the new regulations - lighting. However, no sanctions have been provided so far in the AOC against such offenses.

Fourth, drivers are obliged henceforth to carry Car Status Inspection cards (strange as it may seem, it was not mandatory earlier).

Fifth, escort cars must strictly comply with a prescribed "outward appearance": a blue-and-red top blinker and a special coloring pattern.

The new version of the Traffic Code prohibits overtaking cars with top blinkers, even if those are moving at a very low speed.

Some of the amendments apply to pedestrians. When walking on road sides at night or in conditions of poor visibility, they are recommended to wear light-reflecting accessories and assure upcoming drivers being able to see them.

Also, 24 new road signs and 18 variants of those already in existence have been introduced, starting from January 1, 2006.
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