Motorists will be able to continue reporting speed cameras

Like the majority of motorists today, you regularly, if not daily, use driver assistance applications or services. Waze and Coyote largely monopolize the first places of the most used applications, and for good reason.

Thanks to a well-established community, reporting a danger on the road, a slowdown, an accident or even a radar check sometimes takes only a few seconds. However, some services pose a problem in terms of road safety, in particular the reporting of radar controls. Thereby, lhe reporting of certain road checks deemed to be sensitive should be prohibited at 1is November.

As a reminder, Coyote contested an article not yet applied of the Highway Code (law of December 24, 2019) which provides for a total ban, during certain road checks, “to rebroadcast the messages and indications sent by the users of this service”, even if these indications had nothing to do with the control. This measure had been taken by the legislator after the 2015 attacks. Basically, the idea was to make certain controls invisible on all roads to allow the police to better track people on the run, and without alerting them.

The Sages had been seized of a priority question of constitutionality (QPC) by the Council of State in September, following a request of the manufacturer of systems of assistance to the conduct and navigation Coyote System.

This ban, under the control of the prefects, only applied on departmental roads. By virtue of a provision of the European Union, the prefects could not in fact prevent exchanges between motorists on highways and national roads. Always with the exception of controls involving the interception of vehicles by the police.

During a hearing of the Constitutional Council relocated to Bourges on November 16, the lawyers of Coyote System had criticized these provisions “to undermine freedom of expression and communication”, “an infringement which would be neither necessary, nor adapted, nor proportionate to the objective pursued by the legislator”.

In its decision, the Constitutional Council recalled Article 11 of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen of 1789: “the free communication of thoughts and opinions is one of the most precious human rights”. “This right implies the freedom to access and express yourself in these services”, he notes in a press release.

The ban on communicating certain information in real time may however be applied by the prefects. in the case of roadside checks involving the interception of vehicles, reminded the Sages. This blocking can therefore be pronounced temporarily by the prefects for alcohol and narcotics checks, certain identity checks, vehicle and baggage searches, searches for crimes or offenses punishable by at least three years of imprisonment or searching for fugitives.

“This prohibition only applies to these restrictively enumerated controls, among which do not appear the speed controls”, specifies the Constitutional Council.

The Coyote company praised this decision which allows motorists to “continue to be informed in real time of the dangers of the road”. Its general manager Benoit Lambert, quoted in a press release, sees it “further official recognition of the contribution of our tools to road safety”. (with AFP)

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