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IP/02/1900

Brussels, 17 December 2002

Commission takes Ireland to the Court of Justice and sends reasoned opinions to 7 Member States for failing to bring into force European road safety rules

The Commission decided today to take Ireland to the Court of Justice for not transposing into national legislation European safety rules on transportable pressure equipment. The Commission also decided to send reasoned opinion to Austria, Germany, Spain, Ireland, Luxembourg, Portugal and the United Kingdom for failing to bring into force European rules on the roadworthiness inspection of heavy commercial vehicles(1).

The Commission has decided to take Ireland to the Court of Justice for failing to communicate national measures transposing European legislation on transportable pressure equipment(2) as well as its adaptation to technical progress(3). Ireland had to adopt the necessary legislation before 1 December 2000 and 1 July 2001 respectively. Ireland has indicated that it is still in the process of preparing the measures necessary to comply with the Directives concerned, 24 and 18 months after the required dates of implementation.

The Commission also decided today to send reasoned opinions to Austria, Germany, Spain, Ireland, Luxembourg, Portugal and the United Kingdom for failing to bring into force European legislation on the technical roadside inspections of the roadworthiness of commercial vehicles circulating in the Community(4). Reasoned opinions are the last steps before a formal complaint to the Court of Justice.

The Directive should have been transposed by 10 August 2002. Its aim is to improve the safety and environmental performance of heavy commercial vehicles circulating in the Union by supplementing the annual roadworthiness test with random inspections of a representative proportion of the heavy commercial vehicle on Member States' roads each year.

Vehicles that prove not to be roadworthy as a result of a random inspection, wherever they are registered may be prohibited from free circulation. The enforcement of these random inspections would rapidly improve the maintenance condition of the Union's commercial vehicles and commercial vehicles from third countries that transit the Union. There are more than 40 000 deaths on European roads each year as underlined in the Commission White Paper on Transport(5), the Commission therefore deems it urgent that Member States bring legislation into force, as expected.

(1)Directive 2000/30/EC

(2)Council Directive 99/36/EC

(3)Commission Directive 2001/2/EC

(4)Directive 2000/30/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 6 June 2000, (OJ L 203. 10/08/2000 P 0001-0008).

(5)More information at : HYPERLINK "http://europa.eu.int/comm/energy_transport/en/lb_en.html" http://europa.eu.int/comm/energy_transport/en/lb_en.html


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