The story appears on

Page A5

May 30, 2011

GET this page in PDF

Free for subscribers

View shopping cart

Related News

Home » Metro

Litterbug motorists face fines

DRIVERS and passengers throwing litter out of taxis and private vehicles may soon face a cash penalty, local legislators said.

City legislators said they are revising the public sanitation administration law to include a specific punishment against people who wind down vehicle windows and discard litter.

In addition to polluting the environment, the practice poses a risk of road accidents, legislators and police said.

However, many drivers seem unconvinced by this argument.

"It's a common practice and I do it myself because it's convenient," said a young local female motorist.

"As long as I only throw away some soft food wrapping and not cans, I don't think it's a danger to traffic."

But traffic police say any kind of flying litter could pose a danger to vehicles, especially to drivers who are new behind the wheel.

"Even if it's only soft food packaging, it could startle drivers traveling behind. If they happen to be a new driver, they may fail to make the right emergency reaction and could crash," said a traffic police officer surnamed Yu.

"The danger is especially high on expressways where people are driving faster."

The city's sanitation authority said litter thrown from vehicles is a "serious nuisance" and also called on legislators to introduce tougher punishments.

Fines could be several hundred yuan but the exact amount is still under discussion, according to legislators.

Wang Xiangrong, a local Fudan University professor of urban biological planning, has also urged government authorities to make taxi companies provide rubbish bags in cabs.

"It's a good idea," said Cao Yong'an, a veteran cabbie with Dazhong Taxis.

"Passengers could leave litter in the bags instead of throwing items out of the window. And the bags will be a great relief to drivers on occasions when passengers feel unwell and start to vomit or need to spit - which happens frequently."

But the cabbie questioned how authorities would be able to enforce the law.

"It's impractical to expect taxi drivers to supervise customers or punish them for breaking the rule."

"Authorities have to figure how they can catch people throwing litter from speeding vehicles," Cao said.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend