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Driving Offences in Poland - How Fast can you go without being arrested? ;)


Maluch 30 | 95
7 Jun 2014  #1
What are the Polish laws regarding speeding? At what point will they arrest you on the spot or impound your car? Is it always a cash fine for foreigners or points off license? etc

I only ask because a friend of mine ;) was stopped last week for speeding - 90km/h in a 50 zone / breezing through an 'orange' traffic light turning red. Cop super nice and loved his attempt at Polish. After breathalizing him and a friendly chat he told him that road had no more police on it and to "enjoy your new car" :) amazing.

he was lucky that time but my understanding is that its 100zl for each 10km/h you are over the limit - correct?

so if i'm caught doing 200km/h in a 120km/h zone I will pay 800zl fine??? At what point does it become more than just a speeding offence? I know it can normally be street racing, dangerous driving etc etc.

Also - are radar detectors legal in Poland? I have heard a lot of the fixed speed cameras don't work, but of course the cop this time was using normal handheld radar gun.
Roger5 1 | 1,458
7 Jun 2014  #2
100zl for each 10km/h you are over the limit - correct?

That used to be the rule of thumb in built up areas only.

if i'm caught doing 200km/h in a 120km/h zone I will pay 800zl fine?

Anyone doing that speed will make motorway police wonder about the sanity of the driver. Don't expect sympathy from guys who have to see mangled corpses as part of their job.

Cop super nice

Probably down to getting laid that morning before work.
Bottom line, don't take a chance with Polish traffic cops. They are usually very polite and professional but ruthless, especially now that they are required to use new technology which makes 'negotiation' more difficult.
Johnmaynard - | 19
8 Jun 2014  #3
@Maluch: Welcome to one of the most "lax" regarding traffic rules country in the world (except for DUI, so don't drink)!
Good news: you can peacefully drive over 50 km/h over the speed limit, even in villages, and you won't get more than 500 PLN fine (maximum fine, except if you drop on a "nice" cop); moreover, as a foreigner, they won't even award you points on your license :-D!

Just, please be careful not to take on of us 6 feet under, nor make someone handicapped for life!

P.S.: did you know that:
-Fines in public transports are higher and with less "tolerance" than for cars?
-If you cross a red light while walking, they won't miss you?
-That in 2011, more than 4000 cyclists were locked down behind bars for drunken driving, that was more than all motorists together for the same offense?
peter_olsztyn 6 | 1,098
8 Jun 2014  #4
I have heard a lot of the fixed speed cameras don't work, but of course the cop this time was using normal handheld

Yes a lot of the yellow boxes are empty but they change location of working surprise frequently. Additionaly there is a Straz Miejska. They are more dedicated to repair the council budget. We don't want you (expense generator) in the jail we want you on the road (income generator) ;)
sylvio
8 Jun 2014  #5
Why not just leave earlier and drive like everyone else?
sobieski 107 | 2,129
8 Jun 2014  #6
90km/h in a 50 zone

They should lock him up and throw the key away.
jon357 63 | 14,076
8 Jun 2014  #7
He was lucky - normally the police fine people but I haven't unfortunately heard of anyone being jailed for dangerous driving.

Poland has among the highest number of road deaths per 1000 in Europe which is sad.
DarthYannick 2 | 24
9 Jun 2014  #8
Everyday I drive/ride in Poland by MTB or Car I can see numerous ******** with a car. My wife and I nearly got killed twice because of people overtaking in front of us, I see cars racing, ignoring red lights, turning without warning, getting angry, pushing you because you drive at 70 km/h instead of 120 in town (yes yes I saw that)... Once I was on a motorway, Two SUV didn't like my speed and stopped me. One on my Front-left, the other on my front-right. Thanks I had a small car I could escape through them.

The worst accident I saw was in Poland. I saw a car cut in Three. The engine was on the side, the front on the road, two bodies on the road with lot of blood, and the rest of the car 5 meters behind with two bodies inside.

Drivers here are the craziest of all the countries I had the pleasure to live in. They just don't give a **** about the others. They think that they are the king of the road and that the road whould be only theirs.

And I don't see any cops. Or so rarely. Nothing compared to France for example (where drivers used to be really bad 20 years ago)

Once I got stopped by police. I was just talking to my wife and didn't see the limit. I thing 25 over the limit. He didn't want to bother to cope with a foreigner. But he was nice. And we were also as when you get caught, there is nothing else to say.

Even after 7 years of driving in Poland, I'm still angry on these ********.
Wroclaw Boy
9 Jun 2014  #9
Once I was on a motorway, Two SUV didn't like my speed and stopped me. One on my Front-left, the other on my front-right. Thanks I had a small car I could escape through them.

That sounds a bit exaggerated to me.

I clocked up around 80,000 miles in Poland over the space of about 6 years, all kinds of driving conditions and had no problems at all. Granted it takes few months to adjust but once you do it all works fairly well. If you want to see real nutters on the road try Egypt, but even Egypt has order amongst what appears initially to be chaos. Its just that people used to driving in Western Europe are not accustomed to it.
krecik89 3 | 60
9 Jun 2014  #10
DarthYannick:Once I was on a motorway, Two SUV didn't like my speed and stopped me. One on my Front-left, the other on my front-right. Thanks I had a small car I could escape through them.
That sounds a bit exaggerated to me.

Doesn't seem exaggerated to me. I see similar behaviour all the time. I think the Poles and expats who've been here a long time block out a lot of what goes on and they accept this extreme behaviour. Perhaps it's a form of avoidance coping.
DarthYannick 2 | 24
9 Jun 2014  #11
That sounds a bit exaggerated to me.

Sadly it's not. It was between Gdansk and Gdynia. On the motorway. Two big SUV.

I clocked up around 80,000 miles in Poland over the space of about 6 years, all kinds of driving conditions and had no problems at all. Granted it takes few months to adjust but once you do it all works fairly well. If you want to see real nutters on the road try Egypt, but even Egypt has order amongst what appears initially to be chaos. Its just that people used to driving in Western Europe are not accustomed to it.

I live in Poland. Not in these countries. So I want things to change here as I fear for the security of my family. I don't care how badly they drive in the other countries.

I drove a lot in Poland, and in Europe in general. And even if no drivers around Europe is perfect, here, of all the countries I went, is the worst. Just because they do'nt care about the others. As I wrote, they really think that they are the king of the Road.

Don't get me wrong. Only a few of them are like that, but it's enough to get this high death rate...
cms 9 | 1,272
9 Jun 2014  #12
If you want to see real nutters on the road try Egypt, but even Egypt has order amongst what appears initially to be chaos. Its just that people used to driving in Western Europe are not accustomed to it.

But Poland does not aspire to be Egypt - surely with EU built roads it should try and have the same driving standards as Germany, Austria etc. I know this will take time. I am driving often in Czech and Slovakia and would say that people there drive with far more consideration and caution. So Poland first of all needs to catch up with these neighbors .

Part of the problem appears to be selfishness and entitlement. People here think that a bigger car automatically gives them right of way. There used to be a cool thread on this forum of badly parked vehicles !
Harry
9 Jun 2014  #13
its 100zl for each 10km/h you are over the limit - correct?

I got 100zl for doing 130 in a 100 zone last week.
Roger5 1 | 1,458
9 Jun 2014  #14
How many points? I'm just about to lose six of my current eleven.
Harry
9 Jun 2014  #15
How many points?

None (British licence and a NIP number instead of a PESEL number).
Roger5 1 | 1,458
9 Jun 2014  #16
here, of all the countries I went, is the worst

Either you didn't drive in very many countries or you had bad luck. In my view there are far worse countries in which to drive. Some of them have better stats in terms of road deaths, but there are several reasons for that.
DarthYannick 2 | 24
10 Jun 2014  #17
I think you can call it bad luck ;-)

And I didn't say that it was better in the other countries, I said Poland was the worst. Which mean that it's not that good either in the other countries. ;-)

I'm not 20 years old. I did some serious driving. Motorbike and car. Crossing Europe few times. I won't say that in Spain or Italy they are great. Or that in Paris they are civilized - Marseilles is even worst than Paris. That in Germany they are the best amongst the best. Or in UK & Ireland it's paradise. Etc. Etc. Nope. I'm not going to say that I always respect the law - I do drive fast sometimes. But I respect the others on the road or on the side of the road. I care about the Motorbikes, bicycles, etc - I just hate the ******* taxis, in any countries - I'm not putting myself or my family in danger or any body.

Here, I noticed that some people just don't care. That's it.

That's may be your only default in Poland. Fxxcking crazy drivers. ;-)
sobieski 107 | 2,129
10 Jun 2014  #18
I got 100zl for doing 130 in a 100 zone last week.

You got off cheap, Harry. I got fined that amount a few years ago when crossing the road on a pedestrian crossing when the light was red - completely empty road.
Roger5 1 | 1,458
10 Jun 2014  #19
I wonder how the courts would see a situation like that, when the police rigidly adhere to the letter of the law instead of the spirit of the law. Don't Poles say that laws are made for people, not people made for laws? I have witnessed similar acts of cops not wisely using their discretion and acting like brats. I'd be tempted to test this but I've had my fingers badly burnt once already this year.
DarthYannick 2 | 24
10 Jun 2014  #20
You got off cheap, Harry. I got fined that amount a few years ago when crossing the road on a pedestrian crossing when the light was red - completely empty road.

I got the same ;-)

Empty road, 100 PLN :-(

My wife nearly got one too, but charmed the policeman ;-)

I wonder how the courts would see a situation like that, when the police rigidly adhere to the letter of the law instead of the spirit of the law. Don't Poles say that laws are made for people, not people made for laws? I have witnessed similar acts of cops not wisely using their discretion and acting like brats. I'd be tempted to test this but I've had my fingers badly burnt once already this year.

Play nice with the cops. In every country I lived, and drove so. I played nice - because when you get caught, no way of denying it - and it worked most of the time. Beside this pedestrian **** here in Poland. In 25 years of driving, I got 2 speeding tickets and 2 parking tickets. I managed to pay less for 3 of them. I managed to avoid one in Poland, just playing low profile, smile, and talk nice (okay, being a foreigner without any official polish papers helped, even with my PESEL they didn't want to fine me - too much work for them).

If a cop wants to be a brat, he will be a brat. Believe me. My father was a cop, I did my army in the Police in France, some friends are cops. All the same. If you play nice, they can be nice. And if you're blond with big tits. You won ;-)
Harry
10 Jun 2014  #21
You got off cheap, Harry.

He was a bit surprised that I completely agreed with the speedgun reading, apparently Poles tend to argue the toss about it. That and the fact that he was perhaps somewhat embarrassed to have stopped me and not the Porsche Cayenne that had been overtaking me at speed as he stopped me.

I got fined that amount a few years ago when crossing the road on a pedestrian crossing when the light was red - completely empty road.

I got asked for double that in exactly the same circumstances, showed them that I only had ten zlots in cash and asked if they took credit cards, was told to p!ss off.
sobieski 107 | 2,129
10 Jun 2014  #22
I got asked for double that in exactly the same circumstances, showed them that I only had ten zlots in cash and asked if they took credit cards, was told to p!ss off.

The Law didn't ask me for any cash at all, they only wrote out a "mandat". Which I decided I would not pay. Only to get almost 12 months later a letter from my bank to inform me that they on the order of HGW they would have to block my bank account if I didn't pay up.
Wroclaw Boy
10 Jun 2014  #23
Doesn't seem exaggerated to me. I see similar behaviour all the time.

Really, you see cars being sandwiched by other cars (seemingly working together) and then forced to stop! Define 'similar behaviour' anyway.
Harry
10 Jun 2014  #24
Really, you see cars being sandwiched by other cars (seemingly working together) and then forced to stop!

A few months back I was driving from Warsaw to Lublin, overtook one lorry of a pair from the same firm and was then looking to overtake the second when he pulled into the middle of the road so I couldn't overtake and then slowed down so his mate could overtake me and try to push me off the road as he overtook me. That was the incident which caused me to buy a dash-camera.
Wroclaw Boy
10 Jun 2014  #25
and you just let them do that.....You should have overtook when he let his mate overtake you. That sounds bad man, i can believe it too. You should have taken their reg plates.

I over took a truck back here a couple of months ago, he pulled out as i was overtaking so i would have hit the truck coming the other way, so i had to brake and pull back in - very naughty. I overtook him, then stopped him in the middle of the road for further discussion. I don't think he'll be doing that again anytime soon.

Road rage is a nightmare, i have lots more of it back here in the UK than i ever had in Poland though.
Dougpol1 28 | 2,659
11 Jun 2014  #26
I don't agree with Roger. And I reckon I have been here a tad longer than he. If there are in fact worse drivers in a western style democracy do please let me know.

I started carrying a golf club years ago to sort the delinquents out, if needs be.
Roger5 1 | 1,458
11 Jun 2014  #27
I have been here a tad longer than he

Fourteen years is long enough to get a feel for the country.
smurf 39 | 1,982
11 Jun 2014  #28
I've a similar story to Harry, ended up calling the cops about the ****, cops met us along the road where upon we were told we could bring him to court, but as a civil case as it was our word against his. Got home that night and bought a dashcam.

Have had a few similar things since then, have had 2 d!cks overtake me dangerously and stop in front trying to get me to hit them.

When they get out of the car, all angry, typically they're bald p!icks with no necks, I get out with the camera and say something like 'k!rwa, mam ciebie i numer samochodu na mojego camera'.

So far they've sheepishly skulked away, but like Doug I've got a hurley in the boot in case they get brave.

I don't really understand why Polish men are so aggressive, other than maybe coz they live at home till they're 30 with their overbearing mothers or else coz they're pi$sed off coz they've ended up marrying a younger version of their mothers in some freakishly-mental Freudian twist.

It's a mess though here, I long for the day that breathalyzers are installed in cars and won't start unless zero alcohol is found. These can be cheated by passengers, but if they're again done 5 minutes into the journey then the passenger cannot reach across and do it.
milky 13 | 1,657
11 Jun 2014  #29
Even after 7 years of driving in Poland, I'm still angry on these ********.

I feel your pain.
Roger5 1 | 1,458
11 Jun 2014  #30
I long for the day that breathalyzers are installed in cars and won't start unless zero alcohol is found

Nightmare! Anyway, I can imagine an inventor quickly producing a little aerosol you squirt into the detector. I don't drink and drive, ever, but I can see how such a system could be abused or just fail.

they live at home till they're 30 with their overbearing mothers

That's about the size of it with boy racers.


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