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Mobility minister wants sanctions for drivers who film themselves speeding
Belgium’s federal mobility minister wants to create new fines and punishments for people who film themselves speeding or otherwise driving recklessly.
Concerned both about safety and that such videos on social media promote dangerous behaviours, Georges Gilkinet is calling for a crackdown that includes revoking the driver's licence for between a month and a year.
The punishment, along with a fine, would be for anyone who publishes images of themself or the driver of a vehicle in which they’re sitting while that vehicle is being driven at excessive speeds or in such a way that other road users are endangered.
This means that passengers, too, can be prosecuted for posting the content.
“Speed is, along with distraction and driving under the influence, one of the top three causes of deaths on Belgian roads,” Gilkinet said.
“I cannot accept that some people use our roads as Formula 1 circuits and then brag about it on social networks.
"The glorification of speed or other behaviours that seriously undermine safety on our roads and streets are not uncommon and are extremely harmful in terms of social acceptance of certain deviances.
"There can be no tolerance for those who openly and without any limits obstruct the provisions of the highway code, including those relating to speed limits.”
Other behaviours noted as having been recorded and shared on social media include slaloming between other vehicles, refusing to give way, drinking behind the wheel and general aggressive driving.
Gilkinet said that people who film themselves or companions engaging in such behaviours should be aware that these videos can easily circulate widely enough to be intercepted by authorities.
He hopes to implement the punishments intended to curb the practice soon and plans to submit draft legislation this year.