Survey: most drivers in Latvia do not focus fully

A survey conducted by the Safe Driving School and "GO" found most drivers in Latvia have done something else while driving, representatives told Latvian Television July 23.

Of 622 surveyed drivers, three quarters said they had done something else in parallel to driving, thus not paying full attention to the road, and a tenth of them said they'd done it frequently. 

Driving culture, non-compliance with regulations and lack of respect for other road users are the biggest stumbling blocks for why Latvia is still one of the worst countries in Europe in terms of accidents. Not only is phone use dangerous; there are a lot of other activities that are not prohibited but can endanger drivers.

“If you have hot coffee in one hand and the other is on the wheel, it all threatens traffic safety. All of this makes our chances to reach the destination safely lower,” said Janis Vanks, director of the Safe Driving School.

The offences are also recorded daily by road police, concluding that many habits do not change. The number of drivers under the influence of alcohol is not declining, either.

“The number of crimes detected is only increasing. So the drivers' nihilism against road rules will not diminish,” said State Police Traffic Coordination Bureau deputy head Andris Locs.

Both the State Police and safe-driving specialists ask not only to respect the principles of safe driving, but also to see others to do so.

The State Police release a daily update of the number of tickets and other penalties they issue. On July 24 they said that during the previous 24-hour period there were 122 road traffic incidents with 14 people being injured. 354 tickets and other penalties were recorded including 154 for speeding and two for drunk driving.


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