Current Affairs
Should jaywalking be penalised?

Will traffic regulations and the obligations of pedestrians remain just advice or will they be changed into law as suggested by Judge Consuelo Scerri Herrera when she appealed to legislators to consider introducing a fine for those who jaywalk? Legal Procurator Peter Paul Zammit said that he agrees with the recommendations made by Judge Scerri Herrera. Speaking with TVM, however, Dr Zammit said that an educational campaign is needed so that pedestrians will understand their obligations because fines alone will not solve the problem.

“We need to regulate, not just impose fines, but to see things improve and to see less accidents of this nature.”

The Highway Code already refers to the duties not only of driver but also of pedestrians with a list of tips to avoid accidents including the use of subways, zebra crossing and pelican crossing, while avoiding the practice of crossing from behind a car which has stopped.

“Unfortunately, many do not take heed of what is written in the Highway Code, and probably do not even know what is written there. At the same time, however there is no law which imposes a fine for those who jaywalk or cross the road in a reckless manner. In many European countries this is illegal and is punishable by a fine.”

Dr Zammit said that in this respect, there is a need for a revision of the Highway Code so that it does not just stop at advice for pedestrians.

“So we need to make it a criminal offence, a contravention which carries an administrative fine for a pedestrian who does not obey the law,” he pointed out.

In the first six months of this year, 94 people were hit by a car while they were on the road. Out of these, three people lost their lives and 40 others sustained grievous injuries.

Meanwhile, the Bicycle Advocacy Group said in a statement thatt this discussion should also cover road infrastructure and pavements because there are cases where these are creating a danger to pedestrians.

See also:

BAG concerned on fines proposal for pedestrians who do not observe regulations


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