Road Transportation Law in Latvia
Road Transportation Law in LatviaUpdated on Friday 21st August 2015
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Latvia is a small country with a small but well-developed road transportation system that comprises multilane freeways. Other transportation routes include railways and airways. Companies in Latvia usually employ the railway system for carrying their products as result of trading activities.
Road regulations in Latvia
The driving in Latvia is done on the right side of the road, as in the majority of European countries. In order to drive on Latvian roads, a valid driver’s license is required. Vehicle drivers and owners must carry with them the registration certificate of the car, a document stating the vehicle has passed the technical inspection and an insurance policy.
The speed limits on Latvian roads are 50 km/h in the cities and 90km/h on the freeways. Penalties apply if the speed limits are breached. Also, drivers and passengers must wear a seatbelt and headlights must be turned on during the days. Starting December and until March, vehicles must be equipped with winter tires.
The driver’s license in Latvia
Any person older than 18 can obtain a driver’s license in Latvia. Latvian driving licenses are issued according to the regulations of the “On Road Traffic” Vienna Convention from 1968 and have a 10 year-validity, except for professional drivers’ licenses that have 5-year validity.
Latvian drivers’ licenses can be renewed upon expiration, loss, marriage, if they were stolen or if the code 78 restriction applies. This restriction applies for person driving a vehicle with an automatic gearbox that must first pass the test of driving a car with a manual gearbox.
The documents to be submitted when renewing a driver’s permit in Latvia:
- - an identification document (identity card or passport);
- - a valid medical examination card, if no data exists in the Latvian Road Traffic Safety Directorate (CSDD);
- - the driver’s license issuance fee.
The foreign driver’s license in Latvia
Foreigners living in Latvia for more than 185 days in one year and who have a residence address in Latvia can exchange their drivers’ licenses for Latvian drivers’ permits. Foreigners who have lived in Latvia for over one year are required to replace their foreign drivers’ permits with Latvian ones. Nationals of EU and European Free Trade Association (EFTA) member states and diplomats do not have to exchange their permits.
Foreigners must follow the next protocol in order to obtain a Latvian driver’s license:
- - take driving courses with an authorized driving school;
- - attend first aid classes;
- - pass a medical exam;
- - sustain and pass a theoretical exam with the Latvian Road Traffic Safety Directorate. The exam can be taken in Latvian, English, French, German or Russian;
- - sustain and pass a driving examination;
The documents to be presented when exchanging the driver’s license are the passport or the identity card, if a Latvian personal identification code was obtained, the current driver’s permit and a valid medical examination card.