Poland Bans Phone
Use When Crossing
26 MAY - Poland is set to prohibit pedestrians from using a phone when crossing.
This comes as a result of changes to the Traffic regulation scheduled to come into force as soon as 1st June 2021. The changes also grant full priority to crossing pedestrians.
The new changes prohibit using a phone or other electronic device while entering or crossing a road, including when entering or crossing a pedestrian crossing. The ban applies only to using the phone in a way that hinders pedestrians from observing the situation on the road, track or pedestrian crossing, i.e. texting, browsing, watching video, having a video call or any other use requiring staring at the display.
According to the changes, pedestrians entering a pedestrian crossing will have priority over any vehicle except a tram. Pedestrians will have priority over the tram only when they are already at the pedestrian crossing. In order to increase the pedestrians safety in the area of a pedestrian crossing, the legislator clarified the rules on the behaviour of vehicle drivers, obliging them to observe not only the pedestrian crossing, but also its adjacent area and to allow safe crossing for pedestrians. The driver of the vehicle approaching the pedestrian crossing is obliged to keep extreme caution, reduce speed so as to not endanger pedestrians and allow them to cross first. The new regulations does not release pedestrians from the obligation to be particularly careful when crossing at a pedestrian crossing. It is still forbidden for them to enter the road directly in front of the moving vehicle, including at the pedestrian crossing.
Another change is the equalization of speed limits around the clock in a built-up area to 50 km/h. Currently the speed limit is 50 km/h only from 5 AM till 11 PM while it is 60 km/h from 11 PM till 5 AM.
The new changes further act on vehicle distance. From the 1st of June on highways and motorways drivers are obliged to keep a minimum distance from the vehicle in front in the same lane. This distance (in meters) must be no less than half the speed of the vehicle (in km/h). For example, at a speed of 100 km/h the distance must be no less than 50 m. The rule does not apply during overtaking.