Higher fines for traffic offences were announced by the Minister of Justice and Home Affairs today.

The minister, Carm Mifsud Bonnici, said that drivers who refuse to provide a sample for a blood/alcohol test when requested to do so by the police will be considered to be over the limit, unless they prove the contrary. The fine is being raised from the current €465.87 to €1,200.

Ignoring a red light will be considered a crime, and not a simple infringement, and subject to a fine of €250.

Those drivers found using their mobile phone while driving will be subject to a fine of €100.

A €100 fine will also be imposed on those found driving in reserved lanes; those blocking traffic by driving on the outside line when not overtaking; and those found driving cars with opaque or blacked out windows.

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