Driving a vehicle is considered a necessity in many lands, if you have newly relocated to Switzerland and opt to drive here, there is a lot you can learn about fines, road regulations, and safety. In this blog we take a closer look at Swiss traffic laws and also examine your rights as a driver.
Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol
Switzerland has stringent laws concerning blood alcohol levels. If you drive a vehicle with a blood alcohol level of over 0.5 mg/ml you are liable to face legal penalties. The law in Switzerland recognizes the seriousness of drunk driving offenses. Driving a vehicle with a blood alcohol level of 50 to 79 mg/100ml will result in a fine and a warning.
If you commit a driving offense with that, you will be fined and/or given a jail sentence up to three years along with the fine. If you drive a vehicle with 80 mg/100ml you will be prohibited from driving for at least three months. Additionally you will also receive a financial penalty and/or a prison sentence.
Offences committed with a probationary driving license will add an extra year to the probation period. If you commit another driving offense under a probationary license, that will automatically disqualify you and you will lose your license completely. As a driver you have the right to apply for a provisional license after one year, you will need to have a psychological assessment beforehand, and you will be responsible for all the investigative and administrative costs incurred.
Driving Over the Speed Limit
Speeding is taken seriously in many Cantons. Most motorways have concealed speeding cameras to track a vehicle’s speed. The maximum speed limit in the motorway is 120km/h, 100km/h on the expressway, and 80 km/h in small roads outside built up areas. Depending on your speed, you will either receive a ticket in the mail or an official summons.
Drivers who are repeatedly caught speeding will be banned from driving for an extended period of time. If you are caught excessively speeding an enquiry will take place to consider whether you are qualified to drive anymore, you will also be psychologically evaluated to examine if you are fit to drive.
Most vehicles including cars, motorcycles, vans, trucks and buses are required to have their headlights on when driving during daylight hours. Those who fail to comply with the requirements will be fined CHF 40. Furthermore, driving while talking on your cellphone could result in steep fines, using cellphones is only allowed with a hands free device.
FERZ SA can provide you with timely advice and consultation on traffic laws and regulations. Our team of professional lawyers is committed to protecting your driving rights and privileges.