On 4 April 2004, the European Commission published a Recommendation to the Member States on how to improve their enforcement policies. EU countries are asked to apply in a national enforcement plan what is known to be best practice in the enforcement of speed, alcohol and seat belt legislation.
Measures to be included are the following:
For speeding: the use of automated speed enforcement systems (automated cameras), followed up by procedures able to cope with a large number of violations;
For drink driving: the application of random breath testing with alcohol screening devices (showing whether the driver had consumed alcohol) and the use of evidential breath test devices (showing if the alcohol limit was exceeded);
For seat belt use: intensive enforcement actions of a certain duration taking place several times a year.
A simplified Annex was prepared giving details on the information to be collected concerning the implementation of the Commission Recommendation on enforcement in the field of road safety.
A cost-benefit study carried out for the Commission has shown that enforcement based on these measures can prevent 14 000 fatalities and 680 000 injuries per year in the EU. This remarkable success will however not be achieved unless all Member States meet the proposed standards. This is why ETSC together with TISPOL and ACPO have taken the position that the EU should have adopted a Directive in the first place to ensure a proper commitment from all Member States.
By April 2007, the Commission will evaluate whether or not enforcement policies have improved sufficiently. If this is not the case, the Commission says it will propose more binding legislation, i.e. a Directive.