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Berlin: Police Catch Thousands of Traffic Offenders

Last month, the Berlin Police Department worked hard, as always. This time, it conducted a ‘main campaign’ to improve the situation on the German capital’s intersections. Far too many offenses were registered.

Sofia, Bulgaria, April 2nd, 2022 (The Berlin Spectator) — Every month, the Berlin Police Department picks one or more areas in traffic it will concentrate on. In March, it dealt with the city’s intersections. There were many cases of misdemeanor, but also thousands of actual offenses. The purpose of the BPD’s ‘main campaigns’ is to improve traffic safety in the German capital.

Rear View Mirrors

This includes deceasing the number of traffic deaths. Last year, 40 people died on the streets of Berlin, and 1,980 individuals sustained severe injuries in accidents. In more than 1,200 cases, it happened at intersections or t-junctions. That is why keeping an eye on intersections was the approach chosen by the traffic police.

During those ‘main campaigns’ in March, legal proceedings were initiated in as many as 9,650 cases. This is how many offenders were caught last month. The police conducted a total of 1,100 operations at intersections and 300 more that were dedicated to prevention. In the latter cases, police officers educated traffic participants about existing dangers and ways to decrease them. This included teaching truck drivers how to set up their rear view mirrors properly.

Red Light Behavior

Large trucks pose a big danger to cyclists. Every year, a number of them die in ‘right-turn accidents’. Those happen when truck drivers take sudden right turns and do not see cyclists who are trying to go straight ahead. New trucks have sensors that can prevent these kinds of accidents from happening. Most older ones do not. In 2021, ten cyclists were killed in accidents in Berlin, several of them in right-turn accidents. In the first three months of this year, three cyclists were killed.

According to the Berlin Police Department, its officers concentrated on misconduct in connection with taking turns and right of way issues, but also the forbidden use of cell phones behind the wheel, the behavior at red lights and the abuse of sidewalks as streets. More than 8,300 vehicles, including 289 trucks and 263 electric scooters, and 1,050 cyclists were stopped and checked by the police.

Second Row Parking

On top of its efforts at intersections, the police dealt with parking violations. Too many Berliners park their vehicles in the ‘second row’, on bike or bus lanes. In these cases, the Public Office of Order supports the BPD. Police officers also checked motorists’ speed. From March 21st to 27th, as many as 8,600 offenses of this kind were registered during 108 traffic police operations. In 60 cases, drivers exceeded the speed limit by more than 30 km/h (18.6 mph), which means they will lose their driver’s licenses for a while and pay high fines.

The Berlin Police Department announced it would deal with safety for cyclists this month. Officers will concentrate on traffic offenses cyclists themselves are responsible for, but also with motorists who put cyclists at risk. Illegal parking is another area the police will be focusing on this month as well.

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