Monday, 7 October 2019

Big Brother is Watching: Modern Cameras Placed on Croatian Roads

More technologically advanced cameras than previous generations have now officially been placed along Croatia's roads by the Croatian police (MUP), and would-be speed freaks and careless drivers are being warned to beware.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 7th of October, 2019, over the last few weeks, you have probably read several articles both from us and likely from elsewhere in which the Croatian Ministry of the Interior (MUP) boasted about them having purchased and installed a large number of brand new, modern traffic surveillance cameras throughout Croatia, or on all major thoroughfares between cities.

These are next-generation cameras that are technologically more advanced than previous generations, much harder to spot, and will surely start filling the state budget up with cash from careless drivers very soon, according to a report from Racunalo.com.

At the moment, they are only being tested, but statistics have already shown that in just two months, they recorded more than 50,000 traffic violations, with the most common offence being drivers exceeding the speed limit. But that's not all, Croatia's new road cameras can also capture videos of, for example improper overtaking, as well as the use of smartphones while driving, or not wearing a seat belt. MUP's new and updated Big Brother sees it all.

Various sources cite different figures when it comes to just how many cameras are now set up along Croatian roads, but without going into specifics, be sure that literally hundreds of new cameras will monitor traffic.

Various sources are still claiming that you can get a “50 percent discount” on fines of less than 2,000 kuna, of course, if you pay it within three days of receiving the penalty, among other things.

Here are some of the technical features of the new cameras poised and ready to capture driving offences along Croatian roads that are good to know:

- The cameras' radar beam covers up to six traffic lanes, working 24/7

- Vehicles are “hunted” at 100 meters and a photo is taken at 35 meters

- They can record up to 32 vehicles in a bundle at any one time (going both ways)

- They can measure speeds up to 300 km/h

-  They boast a 20MP sensor that captures four frames per second

Make sure to take care, buckle your seat belt, stay off your phone and observe the speed limit when driving along Croatian roads in future, as it seems that there'll be very little chance of you getting out of a fine now.

Follow our dedicated lifestyle page for more on driving in Croatia.

Monday, 30 September 2019

MUP to Place More "Super Cameras" Along Croatia's Roads

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 30th of September, 2019, the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MUP) will acquire sixteen new fixed cameras and speed control devices, 28 cases/cabinets, 24 manual, and 18 stationary speed measurement devices next year, Vecernji list reported on Monday.

This year, the Croatian police installed 59 new fixed cameras to monitor the speed of vehicles and 122 cases/cabinets in which these devices are installed. In addition, in 2019, 76 manual and 32 stationary devices for measuring the speed of movement of vehicles were purchased, which, according to MUP, will also submit images to the central server and process them through the OEP application, as stated by the aforementioned article from Vecernji list.

Back in 2010 and then five years later in 2015, the Ministry of Internal Affairs acquired 28 fixed speed monitoring devices and placed them at 62 locations, also with their accompanying cases/cabinets, meaning that 87 speed monitoring cameras and 184 accompanying cases (which will have their cameras replaced) have been installed along Croatian roads to date. The sixteen new devices which MUP will introduced along Croatia's roads next year, that figure will reach 103 fixed cameras and 212 cases/cabinets.

The brand cameras set up by MUP, in addition to catching speeding offenses, can catch drivers in other offenses such as the improper use of mobile phones, not using a seatbelt, and improper overtaking.

The system operates as a Doppler radar, so the devices measure two oncoming traffic lanes and two leaving lanes at the same time. They also have the ability to automatically read the vehicle's license plates, as MUP explained.

According to the police, by September the 19th this year, around 50,000 traffic violations were detected by road cameras along Croatia's roads, and they typically related to improper or illicit speed, Vecernji list reports.

Make sure to follow our dedicated lifestyle page for much more. If you're interested in the rules and regulations of driving in Croatia, as well as learning a few tips, check out our dedicated page on the matter.

Thursday, 26 September 2019

HAC Puts First Horizontal 3D Signage in Place on Croatia's Roads

Croatian Motorways (HAC) has installed a unique (at least by European standards) new system on Croatia's roads.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 26th of September, 2019, Croatian Motorways (HAC) installed the first horizontal 3D signage in the Republic of Croatia on Tuesday night this week in order to warn drivers when they're heading in the wrong direction. The first artificial ones with a 3D effect were installed at the Popovec junction along the A4 Zagreb-Goričan, reports Večernji list.

Horizontal 3D traffic signaling will visually act as a physical obstacle in addition to the existing signs which state ''STOP - WRONG DIRECTION'', thus further alerting drivers when they're going in the wrong direction.

This modern method of preventing vehicles from continuing driving in the opposite direction than they need to be is unique in Europe and is still used as a pilot only over in nearby Austria.

The new horizontal 3D traffic signaling consists of two parts. The first part consists of several smaller marks or lines, usually three, which are transmitted in 3D view, creating an optical deception of encountering "spikes" along the road, and the second, larger part, is also transmitted in 3D view, creating an optical ''illusion'' of an artificial projection, or a "raised surface" which could damage the vehicle.

As such, these 3D signals function in a much better way than the simple signs you're likely to see along Croatia's roads, particularly in the capital, and quickly see to it that drivers who have made a mistake on the road and are heading in the wrong direction are properly informed in a way that they cannot ignore or accidentally bypass.

Make sure to follow our dedicated lifestyle page for more information on driving in Croatia and much more. If you're interested in Croatia's traffic laws, motorway rules, borders and other tips, click here for detailed info.

Friday, 16 August 2019

Brand New Cameras and Hefty Fines: Big Brother is Watching in Rijeka

Big Brother has finally taken up residence in the ''city that flows'', also known as Rijeka. After numerous reports of the cameras being placed there, they're now fully up, running and functional and have already delivered hefty fines to those who decide to commit driving offences in five different locations in the city.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 16th of August, 2019, as of yesterday, offences recorded by Rijeka's brand new, modern traffic surveillance cameras, set up at five locations in the city, have already seen some of their respective punishments dealt out.

Drivers in Rijeka - beware. There are five locations within the city that have otherwise repeatedly been reported to be ''home'' to some of the highest number of traffic violations - the intersection of Riva street and Splitska street, then the intersection of Riva Boduli Street and Riva street, and Ivan Zajc street, Fiumar street and Adamićeva Street street (near Adriatic square/Jadranski trg). If necessary, it has been stated that it might be possible to extend this new camera system to other locations, that is, to purchase yet more cameras to place across the City of Rijeka.

According to a report from Novi list, this is a system put in place for the monitoring of the common and improper stopping and parking of vehicles, which was initially presented to the public back in mid-July. The goal is to increase Rijeka's overall traffic safety and reduce the number of violations which end up slowing down the regular flow of traffic at key checkpoints within the city.

The 200,000 kuna system works by setting the cameras record and document all vehicle stops automatically and in real time, 24 hours a day, every single day, by creating visual records, after which traffic monitors decide whether or not what has been recorded is a misdemeanor.

Make sure to follow our dedicated lifestyle page for much more.

Sunday, 21 July 2019

High Penalties for Illegal Parking On The Cards in Rijeka

Illegal parking and improperly stopping to pick up and drop off is about to become much more of a dangerous game in the City of Rijeka...

If you've spent any time in Croatia at all, particularly on the coast, you'll have noticed that being able to park is a rare commodity, and when you do think you've finally found a parking place after driving around for twenty minutes, it's either been taken by a previously unseen Smart car or by someone who has kindly decided to take up two spaces instead of one with his battered old Volvo with ten parking tickets stuck to the windshield.

This is just one of the ''charms'' of summer on the Croatian coast, but it seems that the powers that be have finally had enough of poor parking skills, and a new scheme with heavy fines is coming into play, starting with Rijeka.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 21st of August, 2019, five cameras which will operate 24 hours per day will now be responsible for filming the parking situation in the City of Rijeka.

As of August the 15th in Rijeka, five brand new cameras will be playing the role of Big Brother and are ready and waiting to punish those responsible for illegal and improper parking and stopping in Rijeka's city centre, and heavily.

Many people in Rijeka have long complained of improper parking and stopping to pick up and drop off, as bus stops and delivery venues are often crowded with cars, for which they're of course not intended.

Rijeka's five new 24-hour cameras will now take care of the parking situation in in Adamićeva, Fiumara, on the Riva and along Ulica Ivana Zajca instead of the communal officers. The cameras will work as a replacement for the communal officers who simply can't even manage to deal with and properly sanction all perpetrators, reports HRT.

The cameras will record the offense, traffic officers will verify the offense, and the owner's data will be obtained from MUP. A fine of 300 to 700 kuna will then be sent to the driver's home address.

Follow our dedicated lifestyle page for much more.

Saturday, 13 July 2019

New Croatian Road Toll System to Give Cashiers More Power

We reported recently on the new road toll system coming to Croatian motorways, and it seems that when this brand new system is implemented, each motorway user will have to register themselves via a user account (via the internet or via the application) and road tolls will be paid either by credit card or be postpaid. The powers that only inspectors currently have, will be passed onto cashiers via a new law.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Josip Bohutinski/VL writes on the 13th of July. 2019, as of the year 2022, road tolls on Croatian motorways will be paid in a contactless manner and without the need for the vehicle to stop.

Among the key features of this new road toll collection system, which were officially presented yesterday at the Ministry of Maritime Affairs, Transport and Infrastructure, are the free passage of vehicles without stopping to make payments, toll payment through ENC or DSRC devices.

As Vecernji list writes, using ENC devices will become compulsory for large (heavy) vehicles, while light vehicle users will have the option to choose - toll payment by ENC or via the automatic reading of the vehicle's registration plate. It is estimated that the implementation of the system, including the acquisition of all of the new technology, the construction of an automatic toll collection portal, the adjustment of existing trails and the removal of toll stations, will cost up to 570 million kuna in total.

The new system for Croatian motorways, without the need for major upgrades, should work effectively for at least fifteen years, and the return on this handsome investment is expected after a mere seven years of operation. As was explained during yesterday's presentation, a large surplus of workers isn't an expected result of the introduction of this new, more efficient system, as most cashiers will be transferred to other positions, such as to mobile teams which will control billing, control centres, and marketing and sales departments.

In order to introduce a new toll billing model, the Croatian legal regulation will of course need to be appropriately adjusted to allow for the change. First and foremost, this refers to the powers of the cashier who will be placed in the mobile units who will be responsible for discovering unpaid road tolls.

Therefore, in the aforementioned ministry, they are preparing a special Law on tolls by incorporating parts of the Misdemeanor Act and the Law on Roads.

The cachiers working in the mobile units would thus be given more powers which only inspectors currently have. The new law would also establish a shorter deadline for handling and charging for any violations.

The entire toll charge will be monitored at the control centres, and the mobile units will then catch those who have not paid their road tolls after having received an alert from the centre upon a vehicle's exit from the motorway.

In addition, amendments to the Misdemeanor Act will also be initiated.

Make sure to follow our dedicated lifestyle page for much more on Croatian roads, driving in Croatia and fees on Croatian motorways.

Saturday, 29 June 2019

More Wild Animals Present on Roads in Wider Rijeka and Kvarner Area

Ever wondered just where in the mountains of Croatia you need to travel to manage to catch a glimpse of the wildlife? If it's deer you want to see, the roads in the Kvarner area might just be your best bet.

Your thoughts probably take you to some God forsaken, dangerous place in the Velebit mountain range or far off the beaten path in the rolling, green hills of Lika, but the roads around Rijeka and in the wider Kvarner area might just be your best bet. In fact, it seems that the entire Gorski-Kotar County area is teeming with wildlife, with deer causing the most issues of all.

As Morski writes on the 28th of June, 2019, as of the beginning of this week on the roads in the wider area of Crikvenica, Jelenje, Bakar, Matulji and Brod Moravica, all of which are in the Kvarner area, there were five cases of deer having run out onto the road and into oncoming traffic.

In these events, there were no injured persons, but unfortunately the deer, likely having run into the road in panic, were hit by cars. The total damage created by the deer so far is estimated at about 34,000 kuna. In addition, on June the 26th, in the wider area of Mali Lošinj, domestic animals, more precisely livestock, were recorded causing issues with traffic. In this instance, sheep were seen wandering around on the road, endangering not only their lives but the lives of drivers.

Police from the Kvarner area have since stated that these deer-related events were recorded between 23:30 and 23:30, therefore due to these unexpected occurrences of animals on the roads, both wild and domestic, the police advocated for drivers to exercise increased vigilance, particularly in the morning and evening hours and on less busy roads in areas less settled by humans.

It's worth remembering in accordance with the road traffic safety act, a driver of a vehicle which hits an animal on the road, can be held responsible for misdemeanor if it is determined that the animal has been hit due to a breach of traffic regulations or because the driver was speeding.

Follow our dedicated lifestyle page for more.

Sunday, 26 May 2019

Brand New Speed Cameras Installed on Croatia's Roads

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 26th of May, 2019, the intense fight against speeding in Croatia continues. At a few locations across Croatia, new ''super cameras'' that you simply can't manage to escape from or cheat have been set up.

The new cameras look completely different from those set up a few years ago and are much more powerful, according to a report from 24sata.

The Cordon-M4 camera is manufactured by the Russian company Simicon, which incorporates a number of technologies developed for the needs of the Russian Army and is currently one of the most advanced traffic surveillance cameras in the world. The camera can control all cars in all four lanes regardless of the direction in which they're moving.

It uses advanced radar technology and individually measures the speed of all of the vehicles passing. With the help of a high-resolution camera, it can automatically detect and read the plates from all European Union countries. When a car exceeds the permitted speed, the camera quickly recognises it and extracts its photograph.

The details and information about the individual driving the car and breaking the speed limit in Croatia can be stored in the camera's memory and transmitted over wireless connections. For example, it can be connected to a PC with police sitting nearby, or, the data can be sent to a central police server.

The camera software is able to automatically generate a police misdemeanor warrant and attach a photo to it, which could significantly reduce the scope of the work of Croatia's traffic police officers.

In addition, Croatia's new cameras will recognise and record any car that has an expired registration. Even complete and utter darkness is no problem because it is equipped with an advanced infrared system so no light whatsoever is needed during the night.

These new cameras are more compact than previous ones and don't need special pillars, they can be installed on any of the lighting posts or on the signalling and surveillance structures already placed along the highway.

They are currently being placed at numerous locations across the Republic  of Croatia. For now, nine cameras have been set up down in Dalmatia, more specifically in Split, Šibenik, Trogir, Imotski, Omiš and Makarska.

Make sure to follow our dedicated news page for much more.

Sunday, 3 February 2019

Dubrovnik Highway: Talk of 800 Million Euro Project Reignited

After a decade of silence and complete inactivity, the Croatian Government is moving once again towards the temptation of a highway construction project towards Dubrovnik, a move initially started by former PM Ivo Sanader.

As Kresimir Zabec/Novac writes on the 2nd of February, 2019, after a rather unnecessarily lengthy and of course unclear title, the conclusion of the ''study documentation for the road connection of southern Dalmatia to the motorway network system of the Republic of Croatia from the Metković junction to the future Pelješac bridge and from the Doli junction to the City of Dubrovnik'' (yes you can take a breath now), which was adopted during Friday's Government session held in Dubrovnik, has actually led back to the beginning of re-activating the old plan to build a highway to Dubrovnik.

The last time constructing a highway to Dubrovnik was mentioned was way back in 2009, ten whole years ago, when a construction contract worth 3.675 billion kuna was signed in Osojnik in the presence of the controversial former Prime Minister Ivo Sanader, an amount which didn't include the VAT for the planned Doli - Dubrovnik section. Although the contracts were indeed signed, the money for this project was never secured, therefore the works never started and all in all, time went by and people simply forgot about it for the most part.

Although there are permits, projects and designs from that time that still exist and could be acceptable today, Croatian roads (Hrvatske ceste) will spend 4.06 million kuna this year to take a better look at the southern Dalmatian transport system in the area of ​​Dubrovnik-Neretva County and its link with the existing highway network, and determine the feasibility of any highway construction from the existing Metković junction to the future Pelješac bridge, and then from Doli to the City of Dubrovnik. They'll also rule whether or not it is simply better to use the highway through neighbouring Bosnia and Herzegovina.

EU co-financing

Croatia's Minister of Maritime Affairs, Transport and Infrastructure, Oleg Butković, has already jumped the gun when it comes to the talks held on Friday, stating that the Ploče - Dubrovnik motorway will be built, but the question is when. He is counting on the EU being prepared to co-finance the project in the next operational period. However, some insist that a study is needed because the road image itself has changed over the past ten years, not only in southern Croatia, but also in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The motorway was built behind Ploče and the where the future Pelješac bridge will be, in neighbouring Bosnia and Herzegovina, the construction of part of the Vc corridor from Počitelj to the border with Montenegro through Popovo polje has also begun.

Compared to ten years ago, the highway would now be changed somewhat. Back then, the route went from Ploče to the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina at Neum and then continued on the other side down south to Dubrovnik.

It was estimated that eighty kilometres of highway from Ploče to Dubrovnik could cost around 732 million euros.

Today, it is assumed that the direction would go from the current Karamatići junction to the Pelješac junction, from where traffic will go down to Pelješac bridge. That equals approximately twenty kilometres of brand new highway sections. The traffic would continue along the new Pelješac road to the Doli junction, and from there 29.6 kilometers of highway would be built leading down to Dubrovnik.

According to the old 2009 project, a total of thirty objects needed to be built, of which there were ten viaducts, nine tunnels, and eight underpasses. Back then, the price of one kilometre of construction was 16.5 million euros without VAT, equalling a total of almost half a billion euros without VAT. The price of the construction of the highway from Karamatići to Pelješac is as yet unknown, but this section is also a very demanding part of the project as the route passes through the Neretva valley, so a high level of environmental protection will be required. Owing to all of the above, estimates are that the entire highway from Ploče down to Dubrovnik could stand at a massive 800 million euros.

Make sure to stay up to date by following our dedicated lifestyle and politics pages. If it's just Dubrovnik and the extreme south of Dalmatia you're interest in, give Total Dubrovnik a follow.

 

Click here for the original article by Kresimir Zabec for Novac.jutarnji.hr

Thursday, 31 January 2019

Driving in Croatia: Where Are Most Dangerous Places on Croatia's Roads?

Driving in Croatia is by far the best way to see the beauty and the natural diversity of the interior of the country, as well as that of the coast, but many an accident occurs on some of Croatia's more dangerous roads, often resulting in serious injury and death. The Ministry of Maritime Affairs, Transport and Infrastructure aims to evaluate the situation in order to properly inform drivers of known hazardous areas, as well as work to make them safer.

As Josip Bohutinski/VL/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 31st of January, 2019, the overall purpose of this project, as has since been explained by the competent ministry, is to improve Croatia's road infrastructure by repairing proven dangerous places on the country's public roads, ie, reducing the number of accidents which result in material damage and reducing the number of injured and fatally wounded on state roads.

The Ministry of Maritime Affairs, Transport and Infrastructure provided a massive 55,433,982.80 kuna for the remediation of hazardous sites (black spot removal) on state roads project. Croatian roads (Hrvatske ceste), as a user of this project, will repair a total of 23 known hazardous sites throughout the Republic of Croatia. The aforementioned black road removal project on Croatian roads is being carried out as part of the Ministry of Maritime Affairs, Transport and Infrastructure's investment in the development of transport infrastructure aimed at increasing road safety, Vecernji list writes.

The aforementioned ministry said that back in June of last year, they launched a call for the co-financing of the project which aims to bring further safety measures to driving in Croatia, for which Croatian roads was readily approved. The total value of the project stands at 68,596.132,80 kuna, with eligible financing costs amounting to 55,433,982.80 kuna, and 47,118,885.38 kuna will be financed from the European Regional Development Fund and 8,315,097.42 kuna from the state budget.

As previously mentioned, the competent ministry explained that the purpose of this project is to improve road infrastructure by repairing areas which are known to be dangerous on Croatia's public roads, with the aim of reducing the number of accidents, many of which are serious and even fatal. Croatian roads has therefore produced a document entitled ''a plan for the rehabilitation of dangerous areas on the state roads of the Republic of Croatia" based on the then valid methodology for the proper identification of such dangerous sites.

According to this methodology, on Croatia's state roads during the period up until the end of 2016, 32 hazardous sites were identified, nine of which have been remedied and the remaining 23 dangerous sites are the subject of this project. The 23 black spots were divided into 12 counties, in Zagreb (1), Karlovac (2), Varaždin (1), Bjelovar-Bilogora (1), Primorje-Gorski Kotar (7), Požega-Slavonia (2), Vukovar (1), Zadar (2), Lika-Senj (1), Šibenik-Knin (1) and Split-Dalmatia (2).

The ministry went on to explain that on the basis of the project documentation prepared in these hazardous places, the plan is to carry out works such as the modification of all types of traffic signaling and equipment, including better application and placement of traffic signalisation, the construction of sufficient widths for access roads and for pedestrian walkways, pedestrian crossings, the construction of roundabouts, pavement works, the installation of protective fences, the relocation and construction of bus stops, as well as the reconstruction of intersections.

Driving in Croatia should be a pleasure, and the correction of known dangerous sites, the ministry says, will improve traffic safety on the country's roads with an emphasis on safety placed on some of the most vulnerable traffic participants, including pedestrians and bikers. Croatia's roads should be built and corrected to ensure a better tolerance for potential driving mistakes, which will reduce the overall likelihood of an accident taking place.

Make sure to stay up to date with our dedicated lifestyle page for more information on driving in Croatia, and much more.

 

Click here for the original article by Josip Bohutinski/VL on Poslovni Dnevnik

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