They take speeding seriously in Finland. Since it’s an offence that often costs lives, the authorities hit drivers where it hurts. In the pocket.
Fines for speeding in Finland are based on the driver’s salary. For example, when one of the county’s wealthiest entrepreneurs was clocked at 14 mph above the limit, he received a fine of 54,000 Euros (£39,000).
The sliding scale of fines clearly has a deterrent effect. Reima Kuisla posted on his Facebook page, “Ten years ago I would not have believed that I would seriously consider moving abroad. Finland is impossible to live in for certain kinds of people who have high incomes and wealth.” And who speed, he might have added.
The largest speeding fine paid in Finland was by a Nokia executive who was clocked riding his motorcycle at 43 mph in a 30 mph zone. Anssi Vanjoki paid 116,000 Euros (£83,500).
As a society we take a lackadaisical attitude to speed limits and the rights of pedestrians and cyclists. Why do we allow cars and trucks to dominate our townscapes? Why aren’t the centre of towns designed for people first. Why do we, in this country, aspire to so little?
Surely, we are like frogs being slowly boiled to death. We have got so used to living in places made dangerous by speeding cars and out-of-control trucks – and we just accept it. It doesn’t have to be this way.
Our towns and cities can be made fit for pedestrians, cyclists, children and the infirm rather than trucks and cars.
We have the skills. We have the money.
We need the imagination. We need the will.
We can do it. We can do it now.
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Not only are we Britain’s most ethical insurance company, we campaign for sustainable transport. Sometimes that means protesting until a school gets the zebra crossing they’ve been refused, or running 60 roadshows this year to encourage people out of their cars, or fixing bicycles for free. Supporting this work is easy – you simply have to take out insurance with us. We provide home insurance, cycle insurance, travel insurance and breakdown cover – all while putting concern for the environment at the heart of all we do.