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WINTER

Norwegian driver loses licence after not scraping ice from window

A woman near Tromsø has had her driving license confiscated after failing to ensure visibility through her iced-up windscreen.

Norwegian driver loses licence after not scraping ice from window
Photo: Troms politidistrikt

Police in the northern city tweeted a picture of the woman's opaque front window as a warning to other motorists.

The woman had failed to clear ice from the window sufficiently, leaving her with almost no view of the road.

“In this case the [police] patrol assessed the [offence] as so serious that it was cause for confiscation of her driving licence. It was a danger to traffic,” operation leader Karl Erik Tomassen of Troms Police District told regional media Nordlys.

Police confirmed via a Twitter post that the woman's licence had been confiscated.

They also encouraged other drivers to “scrape windscreens sufficiently”.

Several options are available to police when motorists fail to ensure their windows are cleared, Troms police traffic coordinator Jan-Ove Fossli told Nordlys.

“There is no blueprint for what the limit is. It is the patrol on the scene which makes the decision, since it is they who observe vehicles in traffic,” Fossli said.

“The patrol can instruct [drivers] to scrape their windows verbally or issue a fine of 2600 kroner (272 euros). The final response could be a report and driving licence confiscation. We have seen examples where a hole has been scraped in the middle of the windscreen,” he added.

READ ALSO: Driver caught by Norway speed camera seven times in eight days

TRANSPORT

Why the cost of toll roads in Norway’s major cities could increase

The cost of using roads in Norway's biggest cities could increase due to the governemnt changing the rules for the funding it gives local authorities to spend on transport and tolls.

Why the cost of toll roads in Norway’s major cities could increase

Norway’s government has changed an agreement on local transport funding introduced under the previous administration, public broadcaster NRK reports.   

As a result, money earmarked for reducing tolls or freezing prices in Oslo, Bergen, Stavanger, and Trondheim can now be spent elsewhere. 

The government has changed the existing agreement on transport funding, which was introduced due to toll roads being a heated topic during the 2019 municipal election, to allow local authorities to increase the cost of using roads to fund other transport improvements. 

“The change means that local authorities will have greater freedom to adjust toll rates. But it must be assessed in each individual case whether local changes to the toll system will require a new submission to the Storting,” the Ministry of Transport and Communications told NRK. 

Essentially the change means that the central government contribution to urban growth planning in cities used for keeping toll road prices down has been axed. 

This means that Norway’s big cities will have around 3.7 billion collectively over the next seven years that had been allocated to reduce tolls that can now be spent on other transport projects. 

However, local councils will have to agree on how the money should be spent and whether they want to increase tolls or not. 

“If local governing authorities want to change the use of the grant funds, it must be dealt with locally politically,” the Ministry of Transport and Communications said. 

Toll prices could go up from next year if local authorities choose to raise prices, according to the ministry. Newspaper Bergens Tidende reported in June that toll rates in Bergen would return to 2020 levels. In Oslo, local politicians have signalled that they are unwilling to decrease the cost of using toll roads. 

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