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Almost 700,000 drivers in France do not have a licence

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Almost 700,000 drivers in France do not have a licence
There are 680,000 unlicensed drivers on French roads. Photo: AFP
11:15 CEST+02:00
One in every 100 drivers on French roads does not have a licence, according to shocking road safety figures - and two thirds of those have never even taken the driving test.

Data released to French radio station RTL by road safety organisation Prevention Routiere showed that there are currently 680,000 unlicensed drivers on French roads, representing 1.4 percent of the total.

And the total of unlicensed drivers has almost doubled in the past 10 years.


France has a high level of fatal accidents on its roads. Photo: AFP

Around two thirds of the unlicensed drivers have never even taken the test, and it is believed that the high cost of getting a licence - around €1,500 on average - is putting off many people from getting fully licensed.

However, while these unlicensed drivers represent 1.4 percent of all drivers on the road, they are involved in 4.5 percent of fatal accidents.

Driving without a licence can cost up to €15,000 and the vehicle can be stopped and impounded immediately, and confiscated if the driver owns it.
In the case of a driver who has already committed a traffic offence (driving without a licence, driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs), the penalties imposed are then heavier. They can be sentenced to two years' imprisonment and a fine of €30,000 for failing to obtain a licence.
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