Putin vows crackdown on traffic privilegesMarch 8th, 2012 - 10:44 am ICT by IANS
Moscow, March 8 (IANS/RIA Novosti) Russian Prime Minister and president-elect Vladimir Putin has pledged to slash the number of official cars using flashing blue lights that allows them to ignore traffic rules.
“We will reduce them without fail. We will probably do that before the inauguration (May 7),” he said.
The flashing blue lights, known in Russia as “migalki”, are a symbol of the privileges afforded to bureaucrats who use the lights to speed around Moscow’s ubiquitous traffic jams, which regular drivers spend hours sitting in.
“High level officials should be able to get to work quickly but without any flashing lights or quacking noises,” he said.
Putin offered no indication as to the scale of the reduction, as around 1,000 cars in Moscow are equipped with such lights, including cars used by governors and lawmakers.
The abuse of blue lights poses a serious threat to road safety. There have been several high-profile road accidents involving VIP vehicles in Russia in recent years.
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