The Spanish proposal to crack down on dangerous walking by reclassifying pedestrians as ‘users of the road’ is the latest salvo in an old turf war between cars and the people they hit
Guardian.com–Drunk tourists staggering down Spanish streets at night might need to pay more attention this summer. In a crackdown on dangerous walking, Spain’s Directorate General of Traffic plans to introduce breathalyser tests for pedestrians. They also suggest introducing an off-road speed limit for joggers. The proposals, buried among other road safety suggestions, would give pedestrians responsibilities akin to drivers – and ought to inspire other new laws in their footsteps.
Might we see other similar laws follow on their heels? Shortsighted people could be charged for leaving the house without their glasses, for instance. Walking and texting (and the associated crime of “moving like a robot”, as one Australian study described the result) might see you fined. You could get a ticket for wearing any clothing that is eye-catching enough to distract drivers – something Rome already gamely tried to introduce in its aborted 2008 miniskirt ban.