The most frequent traffic violations and fines in summer in Spain
With the arrival of the good weather and the coming of summer, we are approaching the time of year in which more journeys occur and, with them, also traffic infractions and fines. According to the data, in the summer period up to 10,000 daily penalties are imposed.
For this reason, it is important to be informed of those actions that can end in a fine that ruins your holiday. These are the most common violations in these hot days of the year that you should take into account to protect your safety and your pocket.
Use your mobile behind the wheel, one of the most frequent violations
Not only in summer, but throughout the year, the use of the smartphone and other devices, (as navigators or GPS) during driving has become one of the most frequent infractions, 9 out of 10 drivers admit to having used their mobile at the wheel.
A dangerous behavior that, according to the DGT, goes at the head of distractions that can end in sinister. In addition, during travel during the summer holidays, the use of mobile phones and GPS becomes common, being an element that can divert the driver’s attention from the road for a few seconds.
As an attempt to suppress this bad practice behind the wheel, the new Traffic Law has targeted mobile devices, tightening penalties for the use of them while driving. It is considered a serious infraction and is punishable with 200€ and the loss of six points of the driving license, in the case that circulates holding the mobile in the hand, or three points, if you are handling the mobile supported on a support.
Driving with flip flops
Flip flops are one of the most common shoes at this time of year, especially on the way to the beach or the pool. There are many people who, by saving themselves the process of changing shoes to drive, decide to wear them, with the risk that entails.
Driving with flip-flops is not expressly defined in the General Traffic Regulations as an infraction, but behaviors that hinder driving are. It is for this reason that agents can consider the use of this footwear as punishable, as flip flops can hinder the use of pedals, limit the ability of movement of the driver and reduce the ability to react.
If you want to reduce the risk of an accident and the chances of getting a fine of up to 80€ this summer, make sure you wear comfortable and safe shoes, even if you have to change them when you get out of the vehicle.
Just like driving in flip-flops, in summer it is common to find drivers who decide to drive completely barefoot. As happened in the previous case, this action is not defined as a violation in the regulations, but if we take into account Article 17.1 of the General Traffic Regulations, we find this line:
“Drivers must at all times be able to control their vehicles“.
Therefore, trafficking agents, under this article, may interpret this as a punishable practice. If you drive barefoot, it is not guaranteed a total control of the car, putting at risk the other users of the road and being considered an infringement, with a corresponding fine of up to 80€.
Continuing with the ambiguous cases, circulating without a shirt is a practice as frequent as not recommended on hot summer days.
It is up to the traffic agents to decide whether this is an infringement because, although the traffic regulations do not expressly indicate that you cannot drive without a shirt, there is a rule that makes it possible to penalise a driver who does not have the elements necessary for safe driving. It can be considered that not wearing a shirt at the wheel can cause discomfort due to the friction of the seat belt and thus generate a distraction that ends up posing a danger.
Therefore, circulating without this garment can end in a fine of up to 80€.
Driving with elbow in car window
Driving with the elbow in the window is a practice that was extended years ago, especially when it was not so common for vehicles to have air conditioning and drivers ran with the window lowered to combat heat inside the car. Even today, it is a frequent image on our roads.
Although it seems that driving with the elbow peeking out the window has no greater relevance, it can be a reason for sanction because it would be interpreted as an action that implies that you do not have total control of the car by not carrying the steering wheel properly.
A mania that can lead to fines of up to 80€.
Eating or drinking at the wheel
In summer season, having a good hydration is essential. But if you try to drink water while driving, it can be expensive, because eating or drinking at the wheel can lead to fines of up to 200€ and the loss of two points of the driving license.
This “harmless” action is a distraction and, as such, is a risk on the road.
Carry poorly organized luggage inside the car
With the arrival of summer, holidays also arrive and car trips are more common than at any other time of the year. The poor organization of the luggage in the cabin can end up in a significant fine of 500€ and four points of the driver’s license.
The reason is that luggage and packages carried inside the car can pose a very high risk in the event of an accident. In the event of an accident, they may be dismissed forward and this, in addition to the inertia of the car, poses a serious danger to the integrity of the occupants of the vehicle.
We must always carry suitcases and large packages in the trunk of the car. If it is smaller bags or backpacks, they can be carried in the carrier, but correctly under the seats.
In addition, you should carry only what is essential and necessary for the trip, avoiding overloading the car, as this influences the normal behavior of the vehicle on the road.
Poor parking of the vehicle
In tourist areas and in high season, finding a place to park our car becomes an almost impossible task. Given this situation, it is common to see vehicles parked poorly, in improper areas. Therefore, the summer brings with it an increase of infractions for bad parking, assuming fines of up to 200€.
As regards the points on the licence, only two points shall be removed when stopping or parking in areas which present a risk to movement. Article 76 of the General Traffic Regulations specifies these hazardous parking areas:
“the bus lane, in bends, changes of gradient, parking areas for the exclusive use of persons with disabilities, tunnels, underpasses, intersections or any other dangerous place or place where traffic is seriously impeded or constitutes a risk, especially for pedestrians“.
Driving after alcohol and/or drug use
With summer and good weather, excesses are more frequent and, with them, the irresponsible acts of some drivers, who decide to get behind the wheel even exceeding the limits of the permitted alcohol rates.
Depending on the violation, the amount of the fine will vary, but it can reach up to 1000€ and the withdrawal of six points from the driving license.
Throwing cigarette butts out the car window
Throwing a cigarette butt through the car window is a danger to other road users, especially cyclists and motorcyclists. It is a serious violation that leads to fines of €200 and the retraction of four points of the driving license.
In addition, with the arrival of summer, the risk of fire increases. If a lit cigarette is thrown from the vehicle and ends up causing a forest fire, we would be facing a crime punishable with up to 6 years in prison, depending on the severity of the fire.