7% of Belgian drivers already had accident due to ‘drunk’ driving

June 05, 2023

A European survey shows that 7% of Belgians, or around 420 000 drivers, have already had an accident attributable to alcohol behind the wheel. Last year, nearly 47 000 drivers, an average of 128 per day, were also fined for ‘alcohol behind the wheel’ in Belgium. The new BOB campaign ‘BOB protects lives’ therefore calls […]

Flanders: No more fines for late car inspections due to long waiting times

June 02, 2023

Those who present their vehicles late because of long waiting times at technical inspection centers in Flanders will soon no longer be fined. This was announced by Flemish Minister for Mobility Lydia Peeters (Open VLD). This is a temporary measure. When the problems in the car inspection sector are over, there will be no more […]

BYD accused of breaking Chinese emissions standards by Great Wall Motors

May 31, 2023

Chinese car manufacturer Great Wall Motors has accused rival BYD of not complying with Chinese environmental standards with two of its hybrid models. According to Great Wall, the fuel tanks of these models were leaking noxious fumes. BYD has responded by denying these accusations, citing independent national certifications. The accusations come from testing performed by […]

Brussels Airport back to profit and plans to slash 1.500 night flights

May 25, 2023

Brussels Airport Company, the operator of Zaventem airport, posted a net profit of 16 million euros last year. It is the first time in three years that it’s back in the black. “The profit in 2022 was still limited, but it does shed light at the end of the tunnel,” said airport chief Arnaud Feist. […]

Road signs in Flanders cause row over language legislation

May 24, 2023

Flemish Minister of Mobility and Public Works Lydia Peeters (Open Vld) blows the whistle on her administration over the use of road signs that state ‘Liège’ instead of ‘Luik’, preferring the language of the destination instead of the location language of the signs. According to Peeters, the practice violates language laws. She wants the road […]

Uber Commission: no illegal practices by Brussels government members

May 23, 2023

The Brussels Parliament’s special Uber Commission has not found any “illegal or illicit practices” on the part of government members or illegal lobbying practices by both Uber and actors in the traditional taxi sector. Those findings, 20 in general, were approved on Monday by all political groups except PVDA, and 14 recommendations were also formulated. […]

Brussels Pentagon gets 250 drop zones for e-scooters

May 23, 2023

By early autumn, the City of Brussels will have set up 250 drop zones for e-scooters from sharing platforms in the Pentagon. So says Brussels Alderman for Mobility Bart Dhondt (Groen). The Brussels government is working on a decree to regulate the operation of shared bikes and e-scooters in the Brussels region. Among other things, […]

One fifth of Flemish car users continue to manipulate mobile phone while driving

May 23, 2023

Using your mobile phone behind the wheel is prohibited by law, yet 17% of Flemish car drivers say they continue to use the device while driving. This is according to a survey of 454 motorists aged between 18 and 54 conducted on behalf of the Flemish Foundation for Transport Studies (VSV). To alert these thick-headed […]

Fisker not averse to collaboration with others

May 22, 2023

Last week, Fisker Inc. CEO Henrik Fisker declared he is exploring collaboration with other companies to scale up market share faster, speaking at the Reuters Automotive Conference in Munich. During interviews at the conference, senior executives of other EV makers, Polestar and Smart, said they are open to partnerships to address supply chain and technology […]

Stellantis threatens to leave UK and urges for more battery production sites

May 22, 2023

British car plants will close with the loss of thousands of jobs unless the Brexit deal is swiftly renegotiated, Stellantis warned. Ford also added its voice to the latest warning from the auto industry since Britain left the European Union. Stellantis told lawmakers that under the current deal, it would face increased tariffs when exporting […]

Belgium’s legal framework to retrofit ICE cars to electric is ready

May 22, 2023

After France created a legal framework for retrofitting vehicles with an internal combustion engine (ICE) into an electrical (or hydrogen) EV, Belgium is also ready from June 1st, 2023. Federal Mobility Minister Georges Gilkinet (Ecolo) drafted a new Royal decree by mutual agreement with the Regions, which now have their homologation services to publish updated […]

Kilometer charge in Brussels continues to stir emotions

May 22, 2023

Last week, the various Belgian transport federations expressed dissatisfaction with the Flemish government’s renewed Flemish Energy and Climate Plan, which once again provides for road pricing only for trucks. Now Walloon MP François Desquesnes (Les Engagés) is also stirring in the debate on possibly introducing a kilometer charge for passenger cars. He does not want […]

Stricter rules drunk driving in Belgium: at 1,2% driving license lost

May 19, 2023

From 1 June, Belgium is lowering the threshold for immediate revocation of the driving license of those drunk behind the wheel. The standard then lowers from 1,5% to 1,2%. This was announced by Mobility Minister Georges Gilkinet (Ecolo). The measure will come into force on 1 June. To tackle alcohol behind the wheel even more […]

Brussel hands out 180 000 hours of free parking tickets

May 19, 2023

A charm offensive by the city of Brussels toward merchants and shopping motorists. Indeed, the city of Brussels is going to distribute thousands of free parking tickets. This was announced by Alderman for Economic Affairs, Fabian Maingain (DEFI). By doing so, he wants to support downtown merchants while encouraging “efficient mobility solutions”. Guide motorists’ behavioral […]

Dieselgate: finally Belgian class action against VW on trial

May 16, 2023

Nine years after the Dieselgate scandal ‘exploded’, Volkswagen and its Belgian importer D’Ieteren Auto are facing trial in Brussels in a class action initiated by consumer organization Test Aankoop/Test Achat (TA). According to TA, several trials abroad have proved enough that Volkswagen has used cheating software in its cars. D’Ieteren itself admitted 300 000 vehicles […]

Transport federations also want kilometer charge for passenger cars

May 15, 2023

The Flemish government has adopted the updated Flemish Energy and Climate Plan (VEKP). To meet the target of -40% greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, the government is taking additional measures, including extending the truck kilometer charge and a support mechanism for new and second-hand zero-emission vehicles. However, the Transport Federations regret that kilometer charging for […]

Macron could exclude non-European electric cars from EV bonus

May 12, 2023

French President, Emmanuel Macron, could announce a reform of the government’s EV bonus plan. The suggestion could be based on the vehicle’s carbon footprint, thus excluding cars produced in heavy-polluting countries such as China. However, it’s easier said than done. For a few months now, France has considered a way to exclude vehicles built far […]

Wallonia: new car taxation scheme finally approved

May 11, 2023

After a large consulting round, the Walloon government has approved an upgraded and comprehensively altered version of the Walloon car taxation scheme. The most important change is that the scheme only applies to the registration tax, not the yearly road tax. The new system will be introduced in July 2025. “This tax reform aims to […]

Belgium investigates greenwashing at Brussels Motor Show

May 05, 2023

Car manufacturers are not allowed to extol the virtues of their products by using terms like ‘sustainable’ or ‘eco smart’. Greenwashing is forbidden. This is what the Belgian Federal Service for Economy says, following checks at the latest motor show in Brussels. During that motor show in January 2023, inspectors checked whether exhibitors at the […]

Brussels to limit number of shared e-scooters to 8.000

May 05, 2023

Whether it is an effect of the recent ban in Paris is not immediately clear, but Brussels is drastically changing course about shared vehicles. Starting next year, the Brussels government wants to allow a maximum of 8 000 shared e-scooters on the capital’s streets. From 2024, there would only be room for two operators versus […]

California to phase out ICE trucks sales by 2036 to 2042

May 04, 2023

The California Air Resources Board (CARB) has voted unanimously to start phasing out trucks with internal combustion engines (ICE) by mandating zero-emission vehicles in fleets with the so-called Advanced Clean Fleets regulation. The first phase is set to start in 2025 in harbor environments, followed by a sales stop for combustion box trucks, vans, buses, […]

Dieselgate: former Audi CEO Rupert Stadler also pleads guilty (Update)

May 04, 2023

After Wolfgang Hatz, a former top manager at VW Group car manufacturing daughters Audi and Porsche, changed his attitude in Court, former Audi CEO Rupert Stadler has finally given in, and now follows the same strategy, both pleading guilty to installing emissions-cheating software in cars to mislead official emission measurements (commonly known as ‘dieselgate‘). Until […]

Traffic fines go up 10% in the Netherlands

May 02, 2023

Traffic fines are going up by 10% in the Netherlands. The increase in penalties will probably go into effect on January 1. The Ministry of Justice and Security must contribute to covering the government deficit and thus does so by increasing traffic fines. All departments, except Defense, must contribute to balancing the Dutch budget. For […]

Peeters wants to (re)introduce premium for second-hand e-cars

May 02, 2023

Flemish Minister for Mobility Lydia Peeters (Open Vld) would like to reintroduce a premium for electric or zero-emission cars. This premium is only part of the proposals the minister is putting on the table within the Flemish government during the discussion about the climate objectives. In 2020, the Flemish government decided to scrap the premiums […]

New Walloon car taxation means higher taxes for expensive EVs

May 02, 2023

Wallonia is finally delivering its car tax reform after much bickering. It will take effect from July 20th and apply only to registration tax (TMC), the tax that must be paid when a new vehicle is purchased and thus registered before it’s allowed on the street. The annual circulation tax will remain unchanged, but the […]

Only residents to park in Antwerp’s historic city streets

May 02, 2023

Parking in Antwerp’s historic city center will be mainly reserved for residents and permit holders from August 1st. Visitors will have to go to parking buildings and underground parking garages or park-and-ride zones, often situated at the edge of the city. Never before has Antwerp taken such a drastic measure to discourage motorists from entering […]

Flanders: Speed pedelecs soon welcome on towpaths

April 28, 2023

In Flanders, speed pedelecs are only allowed on towpaths being part of a bicycle highway. However, according to the new policy vision on towpaths, Flemish Mobility Minister Lydia Peeters Open Vld) has agreed with the Flemish Waterway (Vlaamse Waterweg), those fast-riding e-bikes will get access to all towpaths in Flanders, provided they respect the maximum […]

Ombudsrail: ‘2 in 3 complaints related to international train traffic’

April 27, 2023

Last year, for the first time since its existence, the ombudsperson office for train passengers reported more complaints about international train traffic than domestic traffic. That is what the 2022 annual report of Ombudsrail indicates. In 2022, Ombudsrail received 3 395 files for which it is responsible, compared to 2 665 one year before. Almost […]

New kilometer charge tariffs for trucks from 1 July

April 26, 2023

As of Saturday, 1 July 2023, new tariffs for the kilometer charge will apply in Flanders, Brussels, and Wallonia. In Flanders and Brussels, this is an index adjustment. The tariffs for the kilometer charge were indexed in Wallonia on 1 January, and Sofico (Société wallonne de financement complémentaire des infrastructures) will implement a tariff adjustment […]

De Lijn introduces first bus ban ever for 19-year-old roughneck

April 26, 2023

In Kortrijk, Belgian’s public transport company De Lijn, in collaboration with the city and the police, has introduced a bus ban for someone who caused a nuisance on a bus. It is the first time in Flanders that this new type of place ban has been applied. The measure means that the person in question […]

Minister twists and turns to avoid €30 million LEZ fines for De Lijn

April 21, 2023

From 2026, Flemish public transport company De Lijn risks paying an estimated 30 million euros in fines because Euro 6 buses will then no longer be allowed in the low-emission zones (LEZ) in Antwerp and Ghent. To avoid that scenario, Flemish Minister of Mobility Lydia Peeters (Open VLD) is in a crisis meeting with her […]

Belgian commuters get higher mandatory bicycle allowance

April 20, 2023

Employer and employee representatives within the Belgian National Labor Council have agreed on a mandatory bicycle allowance of €0,27/km, with a maximum of 40 kilometers per day. The new regulation will take effect from May 1st, although last year, one in three employers already paid a bicycle allowance. In 2022, 29% of Belgian employers paid […]

Vias: ‘Hit-and-run accidents reach record level in ten years’

April 17, 2023

Last year, more than 4 700 serious or fatal accidents ended with a hit-and-run. A record number in ten years. According to the Belgian traffic safety institute Vias, most victims were cyclists (21%) and pedestrians ‘14%). Fortunately, the vast majority of perpetrators were identified. Vias pleads to step up the fight against drunk driving and […]

US to tighten car emission standards to accelerate EV transition

April 13, 2023

On Wednesday, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed new tailpipe emission limits that could require as much as 67% of all new vehicles sold in the US by 2023 to be fully electric. “A very ambitious proposal,” EPA Administrator Michael Regan called it. The proposed limits are considered the country’s most aggressive climate regulations, […]

Schiphol to ban night flights and private jets

April 05, 2023

Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, one of Europe’s largest air hubs, will, from 2025-2026, ban night flights and private jets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and noise pollution. Aircraft will be banned from taking off between midnight and 6 a.m. and will not be allowed to land before 5 a.m., the airport’s CEO Ruud Sondag said in […]

US details final requirements for EV tax credits under IRA

April 04, 2023

The US Treasury Department has issued guidance for the electric vehicle (EV) tax credits under the famous Inflation Reduction Act (IRA). Though the final draft doesn’t bring in surprise requirements, the declaration has been awaited as it outlines how the eligibility for the second half, applying to battery component sourcing and critical minerals, is calculated. […]

Flanders wants car re-inspection to be carried out by garage owners

April 04, 2023

Flemish Mobility Minister Lydia Peeters (Open Vld) is fed up with the problems at the technical car inspection centers. That is why she wants to engage certified garages for the re-inspection of passenger cars. Today, these re-inspections take place in the 43 accredited inspection centers. In the summer of 2022, Minister Peeters decided to organize […]

Parisians vote against use of shared e-scooters

April 03, 2023

As expected, Parisians voted overwhelmingly against using shared e-scooters in their capital: on Sunday, 89,03% were against in the citizens’ poll. However, the low turnout was also striking. Only just over 100 000 people, or 7,46% of Parisians, had registered for the referendum. So from 1 September, shared e-scooters will disappear from the Paris streets […]

NMBS/SNCB goes €142,6 million in the red in 2022

April 03, 2023

Belgian railway company NMBS/SNCB recorded a recurring operating loss of 142,6 million euros last year. Those debts were due to five consecutive wage indexations during the last year and sharply increased energy costs. Compensations from the federal government cushioned the impact so that NMBS/SNCB ended up with an operational result of 39,6 million euros. So, […]

Uber Commission: Smet sees no harm in lobbying contacts

April 01, 2023

The Brussels Parliament’s special Uber Commission concluded hearings on Thursday regarding lobbying contacts between service and ride-hailing company Uber and the Brussels government during the preparation of the reform of the taxi ordinance. The contacts between then-Mobility Minister Pascal Smet (One.Brussels-Vooruit) and Uber lobbyist Mark McGann stood out. Smet denies the allegations. “No incriminating element can […]

Belgian record of speeding fines in 2022: 707 per hour

March 31, 2023

Last year, a record number of drivers in Belgium were fined for speeding. The number of fines went up from 4,9 million in 2021 to 6,2 million in 2022 (+27%) – that is no less than 16 980 per day or 707 per hour. An explanation for this spectacular increase is to be found in […]

France to ban e-scooter under 14 and fine sharply

March 30, 2023

The French government has finalized its national regulation plan for e-scooter users. As a result, the age to use an e-scooter goes from 12 to 14 years old, and the fines for e-scooter offenses go up sharply. By doing so, the government hopes to reduce the nuisance of the mode of transport that has become […]

Belgian rail plan goes for 2.000 extra trains per week

March 29, 2023

Belgian public railway company NMBS/SNCB’s new transport plan for the 2023-2026 period offers 2 000 extra trains per week. At the same time, certain rush-hour trains and some 20 stops with fewer than 50 passengers per day would also be cut for this purpose. However, according to Mobility Minister Georges Gilkinet (Ecolo), the latter should […]

Dieselgate: former Audi-boss may get suspended prison sentence

March 29, 2023

Rupert Stadler, the former top executive of Audi, may receive a suspended prison sentence for his part in late-scale cheat software with the brand’s diesel cars. To qualify, Stadler must admit guilt, says the Munich court. For the past two and a half years, the 60-year-old Stadler and three co-defendants have been facing charges relating […]

7% of Belgian drivers watch video behind the wheel

March 28, 2023

Seven out of a hundred Belgian drivers admit to watching video films behind the wheel at least once a month. That is what a recent survey traffic safety institute Vias organized among 6 000 Belgians revealed. In Flanders, 5% of car drivers say they sometimes watch a video in the car; in Wallonia, it is […]

France writes off average speed checks because ‘too expensive’

March 27, 2023

The French traffic safety organization, Sécurité Routière, has decided to phase out average speed checks. According to some French media, they would be too expensive to maintain, although a motorists’ organization questions that. The oldest installations, which appeared in 2012, would even need replacement. Average speed checks are no typical French phenomenon. They’re frequently used […]

EU Commission bows to Germany

March 27, 2023

The EU Commission and the German government have agreed on a compromise on how new cars with combustion engines can be registered after 2035 as long as they run on climate-neutral fuel. The original regulation on the phasing out of internal combustion engines is not to be touched again, and the exceptions will now be […]

Dieselgate not over yet: compensations and law suits in the offing

March 24, 2023

The Dutch owner of a VW Golf TDI bought in 2010 has to be paid a compensation fee of €3 000 because his car contained fraudulent software. It’s the first judgment in court out of four cases introduced by the Stichting Volkswagen Group Diesel Efficiency (VGDES) and the consumer organization Consumentenbond. Meanwhile, European law has […]

Amsterdam considers 20 kph maximum speed for e-bikes

March 24, 2023

The city of Amsterdam is planning to reduce the speed of electric bicycles to 20 kilometers per hour to improve road safety. Introducing a maximum speed should tackle the increasing number of accidents with e-bikes. According to a 2021 AT5 survey among 1 900 inhabitants (AT5 is a local television station in Amsterdam), 75% of […]

T&E: ‘Germany’s bid to keep ICE engines will cost a lot to the customer’

March 23, 2023

The German support for e-fuels in new cars could leave the average German driver paying €210 to fill up their tank, a new analysis by NGO Transport & Environment (T&E) shows. The German Chancellor Olaf Scholz is in a stand-off with the EU over his insistence that cars powered by e-fuel can be sold after […]

Brussels Airlines contests new fares at Zaventem airport

March 22, 2023

Brussels Airlines and sister airlines Lufthansa and Swiss are going to the Council of State against the new system of variable airfares at Brussels Airport. The new fares will take effect on 1 April. The airlines’ appeal is against the Terminal Navigation Charges elaborated by Mobility Minister Georges Gilkinet (Ecolo). The charges, which must be […]

Walloon parliament approves sturdy reduction in camper tax

March 21, 2023

The Walloon parliament’s commission has approved the majority’s proposal for a substantial reduction in the road tax on motorhomes and campers. Taxes had risen sharply following the entry into force of the Walloon decree for a ‘fair tax’. The approved proposal by the PS-MR-Ecolo majority envisages setting the motorhome road tax at 40% of the […]

Nearly 23.000 commercial ‘on-site’ vehicle inspections in Flanders

March 21, 2023

The sector federation on inspection centers GOCA Flanders counted 22 914 inspections ‘on location’ last year. These were inspection lines for trucks and buses on the site of large companies, where inspectors go to the customer instead of the other way around. The project to have larger vehicle fleets inspected on-site quickly and efficiently was […]

VAB: ‘Eight in ten youngsters in favor of total alcohol ban when driving’

March 16, 2023

Eight out of ten young people in Flanders are in favor of zero tolerance for alcohol behind the wheel. Almost 17% do not support such a proposal. That is what a survey by mobility organization VAB revealed. Earlier this month, the European Commission proposed a total alcohol ban for new drivers. Novice drivers should not […]

Flanders adds almost 200 average speed checks this year

March 16, 2023

Between 2019 and today, the Flemish government added 234 average speed checks on 136 locations. This year, another 194 controls are planned on 109 locations. According to Flemish Mobility Minister Lydia Peeters (Open Vld), they’re a “concrete and effective measure to reduce the number of accidents”. Excessive speed is one of the biggest killers in […]

Germany blocks EU decision about banning ICE cars

March 14, 2023

After Poland and Italy, a third EU member state, Germany, rejected the EU’s Parliament’s decision to ban ICE cars by 2035. Inside the German government, there is a serious disagreement between the liberal FDP party and the Green party, both members of the government coalition. The German Digital and Transport Minister Volker Wissing has blocked […]

Almost 70% of Germans don’t want to ban combustion engine

March 09, 2023

A survey from RTL/N-TV is throwing more oil on the fire in Germany, as the country is currently obstructing the final vote on the de facto ban for combustion engines as of 2035. With only 14% in favor, national enthusiasm for the European deal is low. The probe unveiled that 68% of the German population […]

Florida senator wants to limit EV use for hurricane evacuations

March 08, 2023

A Republican senator from Florida has suggested limiting the use of electric vehicles during hurricane evacuations, arguing that the charging infrastructure is not ready yet and that EVs with empty batteries could become roadblocks in critical locations. However, others are not as worried or offer alternative solutions instead. Florida is a high-risk area for hurricanes, […]

Gilkinet wants hefty fines for promoting street racing on social media

March 07, 2023

Anyone bragging about street racing or driving excessively fast on social media or TikTok should be severely fined. At least, that’s Mobility Minister Georges Gilkinet’s opinion. Gilkinet (Ecolo) proposes penalties of up to 1 000 euros and/or one year without a driver’s license. Excessive speed has always been considered one of the major killers in […]

EU proposes ‘universal’ digital driver’s license

March 02, 2023

The European Commission wants to introduce a universal digital driver’s license. It should be accessible on smartphones and other digital devices, and it should be easier to replace or renew someone’s license. Such a digital document, issued nationally, should be recognized throughout Europe. According to the Commission, youngsters in the EU should be able to […]