What Motorcycle Sports Touring was all about –

NorwayNorway

Norway has gone Norwegian when comes to the country’s reaction towards drivers who violate the pathetically low speed limits.

The speed limits are among Europe’s lowest, while the reactions are certainly Europe’s toughest. Motor roads with two lanes (Class A) may have a max speed of 100 km/h - but this only applies to a total distance of less than 100 kms. The rest have a max speed of 90km/h.
The common speed limits outside urban areas are 60, 70 or 80 km/h.

Norway is the only European country who regularly condemns its citizens to prison sentences for speeds that seem perfectly natural for citizens of other western countries.
140 km/h on a motor road under perfect conditions is enough to land you in jail for at least 18 days - unconditionally.
And please remember that any license witdrawal is not subject to any court order as in other European countries. The police may even confiscate your license on the spot (you have to leave your bike by the road) for 14 days if they only suspect that you have committed a crime that might lead to license withdrawal.

The controls are everywhere, they are done by both radar, laser, air, civilian cars (lots of!) and helicopters. And the civilian cars are next to impossible to spot: They never sport double rear.view mirrors as in other European countries.
Radar-jammers, laser-jammers and detectors are, of course, strictly forbidden.

overtaking forbiddenOf special interest to motorcyclists is the sign “Overtaking forbidden” (or crossing a double line): Although the sign shows to cars, don’t be fooled. Cars may not overtake cars, cars may overtake motorcycles, motorcycles may not overtake cars! There sureley must be purely historical reasons for this and it is many years ago that the then Western German traffic authorities tried to change this rule. The rest of Europe, however, did not agree..
Of course, we all know that this is an incredibly stupid rule. In Norway, the rule is strictly enforced and will leave with a fine of NOK 5200 (630 ?) and no license for between 9 and 12 months.

stop signAnother, special Norwegian (and German) rule causes much confusion and often results in misunderstandings and accidents for foreigners who visit Norway:
If you drive on a road which is not explicitly marked with right of way, you must always stop for traffic which arrives from your right. This rule is strictly enforced and applies even if you are driving on a major road and the traffic from your right is on a minor road.

UPDATE 6.12.2002:
The Norwegian government today decided to increase the traffic fines with up to 30% (!). Once again, the reason is “increased traffic security”. By now, there should be no doubt that Norway has both the worlds highest fines and the strongest reactions to traffic speeding?

UPDATE 11.12.2003:
The Norwegian government has decided to increase the traffic fines with up to 30% (!). Once again, the reason is “increased traffic security”. And this time the increases come together with a brand new point system.

UPDATE 19.1.2005
The Norwegian government has decided to increase the traffic fines with up to 30% (!). Seems like a never ending story. And for your information, the Norwegian yearly inflation is now below 2%. But then the official inflation rate does not include fines, taxes ...
The latest news is that the Norwegian police (!) reacts to the high traffic fines (you got it right: The police, not the by now rather obedient Norwegian public). The police feels frustrated that many traffic fines are much higher than the fines for, for example, possession of heroine. They have sent a letter of protest to the Norwegian government and threatens that they now will prioritize other police work than traffic controls.
The new fines will go into effect on February 1. 2005. (the fines are specified below)

In three years the Norwegian traffic fines have more than doubled.

Click here to read my reader’s letter to Norwegian newspaper Aftenposten in January-02.
It was, of course, refused. Anything related to speeding seems to be a tabooed topic in Norway. (this is in Norwegian)

Here’s advice on how to Escape from Norway:
’After two days in Norway, we realized that it is a country which is extremely risk adverse. The roads are beautiful, but the speed limits are crippling. 90 km/h on the autobahns (the few they have), and 80 km/h maximum on secondary roads (which is just about every road in Norway) As a means of comparison, if the Blue Ridge Parkway were in Norway, the speed limits would be under 30 mph the entire length of it. You can begin to imagine our frustration. Coupling that with the horror stories that we’d heard about the relish with which the police enforce the speed limits, and we were caught between a beautiful highway and a radar gun. Ronny said that he’d never received a speeding ticket that cost less than $200. He also said that if you are caught at 20 km over (12 mph), they arrest you and take your license. Putting all that information together, and knowing there was 1200 miles of coastal road between here and Nordkapp, we realized that Norwegian roads and two Wile E. Coyotes (Jed and I) were incompatible. The only solution was to get the hell out of Dodge. Sweden here we come! This was also the advice I had gotten from two other motorcyclists who had previously ridden to Nordkapp. They both said that they’d NEVER ride all the way north again in Norway. Sweden had better, straighter, flatter roads, and was much more traveler friendly.’

 norwegian flag of honour Welcome to Norway!

  The important numbers :
Speed-limit 30 50 60 70 80 90 100
License withdrawn,
min. 6 months
56 76 86 106/
111*
116/
121*
126/
131*
141
JAIL - UNCONDITIONAL** 60? 92 110? 121? 130 142? 155?
  In detail :
Speed limit Violation Fine (NOK) Fine (Euro)
60 km/h and lower + 1-5 km/h 600 kr 72 €
  + 6-10 km/h 1 600 kr 194 €
  + 11-15 km/h 2 900 kr 352 €
  + 16-20 km/h 4 200 kr 509 €
  + 21-25 km/h 6 500 kr 788 €
License withdrawn + 26 km/h and more Heavy fine, max 10 000kr
JAIL** + 31 km/h and more* Jail: Minimum 18 days
70 km/h and higher + 1-5 km/h 600 kr 72 €
  + 6-10 km/h 1 600 kr 194 €
  + 11-15 km/h 2 600 kr 315 €
  + 16-20 km/h 3 600 kr 436 €
  + 21-25 km/h 4 900 kr 594 €
  + 26-30 km/h 6 500 kr 788 €
  + 31-35 km/h 7 800 kr 945 €
License withdrawn + 41 km/h and more Heavy fine, max 10 000kr
JAIL** + 51 km/h and more Jail: Minimum 18 days

?) Data are uncertain, please inform me
*) the lowest number is for “motorway” Class B (single lanes, no crossing traffic), the highest for motorway Class A (double lanes)
**) In 2007 it became practice to sentence the guilty to community work when the speed just surpassed the old limits. This means that with a speeding between 130km/h and 135 km/h in a 80 km/h zone, you will no longer be jailed. The same goes for speeding between 92 km/h and 95 km/h in a 50km/h zone. For other zones, the Norwegian Supreme Court has not set a common practice. But don’t expect too much: This will only go for the first 5 km’s above the old jail limit!

For the official numbers on fines, see Lovdata: Forskrift om forenklet forelegg i vegtrafikksaker. (Norwegian only)

Values in Euro are approximate. For accurate conversions, please see www.xe.com.

License withdrawal periods:

From January 1. 2004 it will be the Norwegian courts who are responsible for the withdrawal of licenes (earlier it was, in contrast with most other European countries, the police who decided (!) Now, thanks to the European Union, Norwegians will get at least some jurisdictional protection ).

Below are the new rules but be aware: These rules presume dry asphalt in daylight on straight roads ..

  License withdrawals :
Speed km/h
License withdrawal period
30
56 - 65
65 - 70
70 - 75
75 - 80
80 - 85
85 - 90
90 - 90
Over 90
3 - 7 months
7 - 9 months
9 - 12 months
12 - 18 months
18 - 24 months
24 - 30 months
30 - 36 months
Over 36 months
 
40
66 - 75
75 - 80
80 - 83
83 - 87
87 - 90
90 - 93
93 - 97
97 - 100
100 - 105
105 - 110
Over 110
3 - 6 months
6 - 8 months
8 - 10 months
10 - 13 months
13 - 15 months
15 - 18 months
18 - 21 months
21 - 24 months
24 - 28 months
28 - 33 months
Over 33 months
 
50
76 - 82
82 - 90
90 - 95
95 - 100
100 - 105
105 - 110
110 - 114
114 - 118
118 - 122
122 - 126
126 - 130
Over 130
3 - 6 months
6 - 9 months
9 - 12 months
12 - 15 months
15 - 18 months
18 - 21 months
21 - 24 months
24 - 27 months
27 - 30 months
30 - 33 months
33 - 36 months
Over 36 months
 
60
86 - 95
95 - 100
100 - 106
106 - 112
112 - 118
118 - 124
124 - 130
130 - 136
136 - 142
Over 142
3 - 6 months
6 - 8 months
8 - 12 months
12 - 16 months
16 - 20 months
20 - 24 months
24 - 28 months
28 - 32 months
32 - 36 months
Over 36 months
 
70
106 - 110
110 - 114
114 - 118
118 - 120
120 - 123
123 - 126
126 - 129
129 - 134
134 - 140
140 - 146
146 - 152
152 - 160
Over 160
3 - 6 months
6 - 8 months
8 - 10 months
10 - 11 months
11 - 13 months
13 - 15 months
15 - 17 months
17 - 20 months
20 - 24 months
24 - 28 months
28 - 32 months
32 - 36 months
Over 36 months
 
80
116 - 120
120 - 130
130 - 140
140 - 150
150 - 160
160 - 170
170 - 180
Over 180
3 - 5 months
5 - 8 months
8 - 13 months
13 - 19 months
19 - 25 months
25 - 30 months
30 - 36 months
Over 36 months
 
90
Motorway class B
126 - 135
135 - 145
145 - 151
151 - 157
157 - 163
163 - 169
169 - 175
175 - 181
181 - 187
187 - 194
194 - 200
Over 200
3 - 6 months
6 - 9 months
9 - 12 months
12 - 15 months
15 - 18 months
18 - 21 months
21 - 24 months
24 - 27 months
27 - 30 months
30 - 33 months
33 - 36 months
Over 36 months
 
90
Motorway class A
131 - 135
135 - 137
137 - 139
139 - 141
141 - 145
145 - 151
151 - 157
157 - 163
163 - 169
169 - 175
175 - 181
181 - 187
187 - 194
194 - 200
Over 200
3 - 5 months
5 - 6 months
6 - 7 months
7 - 8 months
8 - 9 months
9 - 12 months
12 - 15 months
15 - 18 months
18 - 21 months
21 - 24 months
24 - 27 months
27 - 30 months
30 - 33 months
33 - 36 months
Over 36 months
 
100
141 - 145
145 - 147
147 - 149
149 - 151
151 - 155
155 - 161
161 - 167
167 - 173
173 - 179
179 - 185
185 - 191
191 - 197
197 - 204
204 - 210
Over 210
3 - 5 months
5 - 6 months
6 - 7 months
7 - 8 months
8 - 9 months
9 - 12 months
12 - 15 months
15 - 18 months
18 - 21 months
21 - 24 months
24 - 27 months
27 - 30 months
30 - 33 months
33 - 36 months
Over 36 months
For the official facts on license withdrawals, see Lovdata: Forskrift om tap av retten til å føre motorvogn. (Norwegian only)

Values in Euro are approximate. For accurate conversions, please see www.xe.com.

Please report any changes or errors to terje(at)enge.no

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Published 20.05.2004
Last update 27.06.2011
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