The Ministry of Transportation and Communications is proposing increasing the penalties on motorists who have illegal license plates.
Chi Wen-jong (祈文中), director of the ministry’s Department of Railways and Highways, said the current regulation only sets the range for the base penalty at between NT$3,600 and NT$18,000 for both motorcyclists and drivers of small or large motor vehicles.
The proposed changes set different base fines for drivers of different types of motor vehicle and for different types of violations, Chi said.
Motorcyclists with revoked license plates would be fined a minimum of NT$3,600, but the base fine for the same violation by drivers of small motor vehicles would be NT$5,400 and for larger motor vehicles it would be NT$10,800.
Other illegal uses of license plates include loaning license plates to other motorists or driving with a license plate registered to a different car, displaying a license plate that is suspended, driving without a license plate and displaying the plates of a car that is registered as no longer in service.
The base fine for all these violations for small motor vehicles under the new proposals would increase from NT$5,400 to NT$7,200, and for large motor vehicles from NT$5,400 to NT$10,800.
Chi said approximately 20,000 illegal license plates were reported in 2007 and that the changes to regulations were proposed out of consideration for better road safety and management. They were not being changed to increase revenues generated for the national treasury, he said.
The department is also proposing other amendments to traffic regulations.
The safe distance between large motor vehicles inside the Hsuehshan Tunnel would be set at 60m as the speed limit has been raised to 80kph, Chi said. The safe distance for small vehicles inside the tunnel would be 50m.
It is also proposed that motorists be fined between NT$600 and NT$1,200 if tires or any other part of their cars come loose on freeways or expressways, Chi said, adding that the same penalty would apply to drivers of large motor vehicles that do not have certified makes of tires.
The regulations set for driving inside the Hsuehshan Tunnel were adapted from those used by the EU, Chi said.