2023 Author: Eric Donovan | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-21 15:44
Winter tires are compulsory: From Saturday, drivers risk twice as high fines as before in ice and snow. Most of them have already taken precautions. The others have a problem.
There are no more excuses for drivers: from Saturday, winter tires are mandatory in snow, ice and mud. The long-awaited new regulation in the Road Traffic Act (StVO) was published on Friday in the Federal Law Gazette and will therefore apply from the following day. Accordingly, all cars in winter weather must have tires with the mud and snow symbol (M + S). Because of the onset of winter, winter tires are currently sold out in many places - but surveys show that around 90 percent of motorists already have winter tires.
New regulation for all vehicles
In the particularly snowy Bavaria and in numerous other federal states, the duty is not specifically monitored by the police. "We have other things to do," said a police spokesman in Bavaria. The law enforcement officers want to take a closer look at the tires during normal controls.
The new regulation applies to all motor vehicles, including motorcycles. The fines will be doubled. Anyone caught with summer tires will have to pay 40 instead of the previous 20 euros. The driver is prosecuted, not the owner. Obstacles in winter traffic due to unsuitable tires are punished with 80 euros and one point in the traffic offender card in Flensburg.
Insurance companies no longer necessarily have to pay
Anyone who can no longer get winter tires due to the boom in demand still has to pay a fine, emphasized a spokesman for the Ministry of Transport on Friday. The new regulation had long been announced. "Anyone who is driving with the wrong tires now puts themselves and others at risk," warned Transport Minister Peter Ramsauer (CSU). The duty should curb dangerous slides. On November 26, the Federal Council approved the amendment to the StVO presented by Ramsauer.
"Many are already well equipped," said the minister. According to the law, all drivers would now have to put on winter tires on black ice, slippery snow, slush, ice or frost. The ADAC emphasized that in the event of accidents with summer tires, individual insurance companies could refuse payments with reference to “gross negligence”.
Traffic clubs criticize certain regulations
In July, the Oldenburg Higher Regional Court rejected the previous regulations as being too vague. So far it has only been said that the equipment of vehicles "should be adapted to the weather conditions". That is why the specification had become necessary.
Recently, especially trucks that were on the road with summer tires and suddenly stood sideways in the snow, caused a lot of trouble for motorists. The Auto Club Europa criticizes that, according to the new regulation, trucks only have to put winter tires on the drive axles. That does not prevent the sliding parts. The ADAC recommends snow chains for trucks, especially on motorway inclines.
Snow chains on summer tires not free of fine
All M + S tires are considered winter tires. All-season tires are also included. If you pull snow chains over summer tires, you have to pay. The FDP transport politician Patrick Döring told the dpa that the new regulation will create clarity. The task now is to achieve a uniform definition for winter tires at EU level.