By Cathy Elelman •
Published: 03 Jul 2020 • 10:00
SPAIN’S summer holiday traffic control campaign officially gets underway at 3pm today Friday with expectations many people will opt for destinations not too far from home and mini-breaks rather than fortnight-long vacations due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Last July and August there were some 91 million movements on Spanish roads, which was pretty much what the DGT Directorate General of Traffic had forecast.
This year is going to be “much more complicated,” commented Interior Minister Fernando Grande-Marlaska at the presentation of the DGT’s ‘Operacion Salida’ campaign for the next two months.
“We are not going to make predictions about what the number of movements is going to be.”
The DGT is however anticipating an increase in short getaways and day trips to visit family and friends or for relatively nearby leisure options.
Keeping an eye on drivers there are 764 fixed speed radars, 548 mobile radars, 12 helicopters, 216 cameras to control seatbelt and mobile phone use, 11 drones and 15 camouflaged vans. There are also going to be extra speeding, drink-driving and drug controls.
The DGT road safety public information campaign for this summer centres on the coronavirus pandemic, which has now claimed the lives of more than 28,000 people.
“This country cannot take any more deaths. When driving exercise extreme caution,” is the stark message.
The campaign includes a highly symbolic ad featuring Olympic skater Javier Fernandez on the ice at Madrid’s Palacio de Hielo, which was converted into a morgue during the peak of the coronavirus crisis.
Marlaska called for drivers to take particular care after months of not being able to travel far.
“The desire to recover the new normality cannot make us behave recklessly on the roads,” the minister warned, cautioning motorists not to confuse speeding with “regaining freedom.”
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Cathy Elelman is the local writer for the Costa de Almeria edition of the Euro Weekly News.
Based in Mojacar for the last 21 years, Cathy is very much part of the local community and is always well and truly up on all the latest news and events going on in this region of Spain.
Her top goals are to do the best job she can informing the local English-speaking community, visitors to the area and the wider world about about the news in Almeria, to learn something new every day, and to embrace very new challenge this fast-changing world brings her way.
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