Mopedist, don’t screw up – Police advice for safe moped season

28.4.2021 11.54
News item

Winter starts to be bygone and we are heading full speed towards the spring. We are all eager to jump on the moped and other two-wheelers and take off. This is the perfect time to go through the questions what, how and where you ride – to make this traffic season safe for all road users.

What are you riding, in other words, are you entitled to drive your moped?

The law is very strict about what vehicle requires which rights. Under Finnish criminal law, people have penal responsibility as of 15 years of age. 

Chief Inspector Asko Sartanen of the Itä-Uusimaa Police department repeats the rules and regulations of moped driving, giving advice for safe riding. 

- If you fail to follow the moped riding provisions and drive a rigged moped which is no longer of the vehicle class it originally was, you may become guilty of unlawful driving of a vehicle.  The consequence is a fine and a driving ban, Chief Inspector Sartanen explains. 

In these situations, we also face issues related to motor vehicle tax and traffic insurance.
It is good to remember that whenever you interfere with the structure of any vehicle, you will always have to have it inspected again.

How you drive - do you respect speed limits?

In the Police traffic safety work, the control of the way of driving is a central and important method of improving traffic safety. Speed limits are there for a reason related to the portion of the road in question, and respecting them is extremely important.

- Speed limits have not been imposed to speed up the journey but for the control of the situation. The driving speed has a great impact on the reaction and braking distance, and the vehicle specific maximum speeds should also be taken into consideration, Chief Inspector Sartanen points out.

Where you drive - areas where mopeds can be driven clearly defined in law 

The road areas usable for moped riding are strictly defined in the Road Traffic Act, with the underlying aim to improve traffic safety. Crashes involving mopeds and cars can have very serious consequences. Likewise, accidents with mopeds and pedestrians can cause serious trauma to those involved.

Let's repeat rules and regulations before season start

The vehicle driver is always primarily responsible for the safe traffic behaviour and respect of the regulations. 

- As and advice to the parents, I would suggest that you repeat the traffic rules with your young drivers before the season starts. The Police finds the moped is a good vehicle as long as it is correctly equipped and safe and the driver is also correctly protected, having a correct attitude to the traffic. As everywhere in traffic, zero tolerance to intoxicant abuse must also apply to moped riding. Let’s work together to make this a safe driving season, Chief Inspector Sartanen encourages the moped riders. 

Moped driving safer than before

Chief Superintendent Heikki Kallio of the National Police Board is satisfied to report that moped riding seems to be safer than before.

- According to the statistics of Finnish Road Safety Council Liikenneturva, the number of deaths and injuries among moped drivers has dropped by over 70 percent over the past decade, he says. 

During the past three years, three moped drivers were killed in traffic on average while there have been 360 injured among mopedists. 

According to the 2019 statistics, those with serious injuries were 33. Among all people injured in road traffic, seven percent were driving a moped. Among the fatalities, nine out of ten were male while their share among the injured was two out of three.  In personal injuries, the place of the accident was a crossing in half of the cases.

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