Increase in drones to monitor traffic in Spain

drones to monitor traffic in Spain

The General Directorate of Traffic has finalized the distribution throughout the Spanish territory of the 39 surveillance drones -28 more than in 2020. The drones will be used to support the twelve traffic helicopters used by the traffic section of the Guardia civil.

In May 2018 the drones began to be used in test mode and since August 2019 they have been used for the surveillance and detection of traffic infractions.

The drones are intended for the detection of reckless behavior on the roads and the surveillance of traffic in those sections of high risk of accidents. Additionally, they will be positioned on roads with a greater traffic of vulnerable users, in particular cyclists, motorcyclists and pedestrians.

They will also be used to monitor and support regulation in operations and special events in which a high number of road movements are concentrated. They could also be used for ordinary regulatory missions complementary to those carried out by helicopters; and to support emergencies.

Drone and traffic fines in Spain
drones to monitor traffic in Spain

The DGT has trained 35 personnel in piloting the drones and 60 personnel in handling the cameras that these systems integrate. The General Directorate of Traffic is accredited by the State Agency for Aviation Safety as an operator of remotely piloted aircraft systems. Likewise, the DGT helicopter unit is a pilot training organization for the issuance of basic and advanced certificates for piloting drones.

How do they work ?

The operation of these drones is carried out by a pilot, who is in charge of handling the flight controls, and an operator who maneuvers the camera.

The infraction captured by drones may be notified immediately by an agent of the Traffic Group of the Civil Guard or be processed later by the competent authorities. 

The 39 drones will be distributed throughout the country, except the Basque Country and Catalonia.

Each DGT helicopter patrol based in A Coruña, Zaragoza, Valladolid, Seville, Malaga and Valencia will have two drones to carry out operations in their local area of ​​influence. The central base in Madrid will have 15 aircraft that, in addition to flying over the roads of the Community of Madrid and Castilla la Mancha, will provide support to the rest of the provinces of the national territory that need it.

For their part, Cantabria, Asturias and Extremadura will have two drones per area; and the island areas of the Balearic and Canary Islands, with three units each.

History of drones and traffic infractions in Spain

Since the start of the drone traffic surveillance activity in 2018, the DGT has accumulated 500 flight hours with these systems, has monitored more than 55,000 vehicles and has detected more than 600 infractions. It has become one of the most effective means of detecting the use of mobile telephones behind the wheel (they represent 12.5% ​​of the total infractions detected), the incorrect use of seat belts and child restraint systems (15, 9%), and overtaking cyclists without respecting the minimum safety distances (4%).

Changes to the ITV Spain June 2021

changes to the itv test spain 2021
changes to the itv test spain 2021

From 1st June 2021 there are some small changes to the Spanish ITV test.

Until now if there was a fault with the anti-locking braking system this could have been deemed a minor defect. From now on any defect in the ABS system will be reported as a major fault.

Additionally, if the rear view mirrors are detached then this will also be noted as a major fault.

Faults are categorised as either mild, serious or very serious.  Serious faults will mean you have to get the vehicle repaired and re-tested within a certain time frame. Very serious means your vehicle cannot leave the ITV testing station under its own steam and you will have to organise for a tow truck to take it to the garage. For more information about the Spanish ITV visit our page or watch the video about the ITV in Spain.

The price of the ITV test in Spain varies depending on your vehicle and also on your location.

Car insurance tax increase spain 2021

car insurance tax increase spain 2021

Car Insurance tax increase Spain 2021 on top of new emissions calculations which will increase prices of new cars.

The tax on insurance policies will increase by 2% from 6% to 8% from 1st January 2021. Whilst this was announced at the end of October 2020, with January fast approaching it is worth remembering that any increase in your premium price in 2021 is not all down to the insurance company.

With nearly 80% of all Spanish households holding a car insurance policy this increase is going to affect most families. It is not just car insurance in Spain that will see this increase. Those with other general insurances including home and funeral plans will see the increase there too.

The Spanish government hopes to bring in an extra 455millon euros through this tax in the first year.

This is the first increase in the tax for 20 years they argue and the tax is lower than in countries like the UK (12.5%) Germany (19%) and Italy (12.5% to 21.25%).

WLTP will make your new car more expensive

This is not the only additional cost to the motorist in Spain. From January someone buying a new car will also see many new car prices rise with the introduction of the World-wide harmonized light-duty test procedure (WLTP).

The WLTP is a new European standard used to test fuel consumption, CO2 emissions, pollutant emissions and energy consumption (electric vehicles). It replaces the NEDC which was introduced back in the 1980s. The thinking behind the new measures is that it gives a more realistic measure as it has been based on real-driving data gathered from around the world.

This means that the emissions and CO2 levels shown more accurately reflect what your car is really producing. Some of the tests involve more realistic driving behaviour, a greater range of driving situations and longer distances. These more accurate tests have a drawback for buyers in Spain, however.

The downside for the buyer is that registration taxes in Spain are based on CO2 emissions. With more accurate recording of CO2 emissions many cars will move into a higher emission bracket and therefore incur a higher registration tax.

Emissions (g/km) Tax
0 to 120 0%
121 to 159 4.75%
160 to 199 9.75%
200 or more 14.75%

If the vehicle you want to buy was previously in the 0 to 120 g/km tax bracket but has now moved in the 121 to 159 bracket under the new more accurate test your car will be more expensive. For example, a 20,000 euro car will cost almost 1,000 euros more.

Top selling plug in hybrid in Spain 2020 – Kia Niro


The Kia Niro PHEV leads the sales charts of plug-in hybrids so far in 2020, with more than 1,000 units sold in this country.

Since its launch, the Niro has always remained at the top of the lists of car sales, with more than 5,600 units sold so far this year.

It is another milestone in the success story of a model that approaches 25,000 units sold in Spain and has managed to bring together all of the three most effective public electrification technologies: hybrid, plug-in and electric hybrid. But the success of the Niro goes far beyond our borders. In Europe, sales are heading towards the 150,000 units since its launch.


What are the key factors that have made the Niro a bestseller?

The Kia Niro is the first crossover in the world to offer hybrid versions, plug-in and electric hybrid. This comprehensive offering, which no other SUV or crossover has ever managed to match, allows users to choose the variant that best suits their needs, without compromising anything. One of the keys to this achievement is the design of a specific platform for environmentally friendly vehicles.

A complete electrified offer

The Kia Niro is the first crossover in the world to offer hybrid versions, plug-in and electric hybrid. This comprehensive offering, which no other SUV or crossover has ever managed to match, allows users to choose the variant that best suits their needs, without compromising anything. One of the keys to this achievement is the design of a specific platform for environmentally friendly vehicles.


The Niro has a look and attributes that have made the crossover into the big winners in the market. On the one hand, it offers a high driving position, interior space and a boot capable. And secondly, precise, comfortable and safe driving on the road and in town.

The right size

Kia hit the mark by creating the world’s first electrified compact crossover. The model has dimensions that have become the perfect middle ground on the market.

Its length, width and height allow it to offer ample interior space, and a capable trunk. At the same time, it maintains a contained size for driving and parking in the city, and to offer agile reactions on the road.

Safety equipment

The Kia Niro has obtained five stars in the Euro NCAP tests, with a high level of protection for adult occupants (91%), children (80%) and pedestrians (70%), in addition to obtaining an 81% in assistance systems to driving. This model has brought to its segment the most advanced security systems, encompassed under the Kia DRiVE WISE sub-brand. These active safety technologies include: the emergency braking assistance system to avoid frontal collisions (Forward Collision-avoidance Assist FCA); the Blind-spot Collision Warning BCW detection system; Adaptive Cruise Control (Smart Cruise Control SCC) with automatic stop and start (Stop & Go); the Lane Keeping Assist System (Lane Keeping Assist LKA); Fatigue Detector (Driver Attention Warning DAW) and Dynamic High Beam Assist (HBA).

Full connectivity

The Niro responds to the demands of users with the most advanced connectivity system: UVO Connect. This system is composed of a large touch screen, which has a multiple connection via Bluetooth; the Kia Live system, which has a SIM card to collect and update information in real time; and the Kia UVO app, compatible with Android and Apple smartphones.

Thanks to this, the navigator, for example, takes advantage of real-time traffic data to draw the fastest routes. Another interesting help is the price, location and the availability of possible parking spaces, on the street or in car parks. Weather forecasts or fuel prices can also be received in the car in real time. In the electric and plug-in hybrid versions, the system also provides information on the status, availability and compatibility of the charging points.

The UVO application allows us to transfer content from our smartphone to the car, receive information from the car and perform remote operations to activate functions and devices of the vehicle. In the electric and plug-in hybrid versions of the Niro, it also allows you to check the remaining battery percentage from the phone, calculate the time it would take to charge with different types of chargers, set the charging time and program the start time.

ECO and O Emissions

The Niro range enjoys the benefits of ECO (hybrid version) and 0 Emissions (Niro plug-in hybrid and e-Niro). Hybrids with an ECO label can circulate even when there is high pollution and through restricted areas such as Madrid Central. In some cities they have discounts on paying for parking in regulated parking areas. They also benefit from a discount on some tolls (especially in Catalonia).

The 0 emissions label brings even more benefits. In addition to what was mentioned about the ECOs, the O emissions also enjoy a road tax discount, which is usually 75%; They can always access the BUS-HOV lanes, enjoy a greater discount on tolls and can park for free in regulated parking areas in many cities.

Secure value

The Niro incorporates the latest technologies, but it is a more than a proven product, with nearly 400,000 units circulating around the world with a high degree of satisfaction from their owners. In addition, Kia leads the most prestigious reliability studies year after year and offers a 7-year warranty.

Value for money

The Kia Niro HEV is available from 20,100 euros; the PHEV, from 24,500 euros and the e-Niro, from 37,263 euros. They are very competitive rates taking into account the quality, technology and standard equipment of this model.

Driving quality

Electrified cars do not have to be boring to drive and the Niro is a good example of this in its three versions. All three have a low centre of gravity, due to the arrangement of the batteries, which conveys a lot of stability when cornering. And they offer a great feeling of acceleration due to the contribution of the electric motor and the operation of the sequential gearbox (in hybrid versions). 

Autonomous driving level 2

This is another example of the advanced equipment of this model. The Kia Niro comes with (on the HEV, from the Drive trim; and on the PHEV and e-Niro as standard from the Concept trim) Lane Following Assist LFA. This Level 2 autonomous driving technology controls acceleration, braking and steering based on the vehicle ahead. The LFA uses a camera and radar sensors to maintain a safe distance from the vehicle in front, while detecting the lines of the road so that the vehicle travels in the center of its lane.

A new state of alarm in Spain

a new state of alarm in spain

The Spanish government today declared a new state of alarm in Spain. With the increasing numbers of COVID-19 infections in recent days this comes as no surprise. The state of alarm will initially be in place for 15 days but the government is seeking to extend this to 9 May 2021.

The new state of alarm in Spain is not as strict as the one put in place in March 2020. The idea is to curb movement at night and possibly between regions if the situation deteriorates.

From today, a curfew is in place whereby you cannot leave your property between the hours of 11pm and 6am. This is a national curfew with the exception of the Canary Islands which has far lower infection rates than the rest of Spain.

The Central Government has given the regions some flexibility. They are permitted to move the hours of the curfew an hour either way.

Other powers the Regions will have is to restrict movement between areas under their control or even the whole province.

There are some exceptions

You can leave your property during the curfew hours but only if you have a justified reason. For example, to attend the doctors or you work during these hours.

Can you still meet friends?

The maximum number of people that can gather socially is six or less.

a new state of alarm in spain

Agreed measures to determine Regional actions

The Health Ministry has agreed an action plan with the regional authorities. There are a number of indicators that are factored into a calculation to determine this action. Regions will be graded into one of four categories, extreme, high, medium and low.

Good news if you want to trade in your old car!

Plan Moves 2020

If you are thinking of replacing your old car, then the Spanish government have got some good news for you.

Plan Moves 2020

The average age of vehicles in Spain is 12.7 years and the government wants to promote electric and low emission replacements.

Plan Moves 2020 forms just part of a huge 3,750 million euro plan the Spanish government announced today. For this element of the scheme 100 million euros has been set aside.

Plan Moves 2020

If you buy a new car and your old one is over ten years old and subsequently scrapped, then the government will give you money to help with the switch. Your old car cannot subsequently be sold on. In addition, the new vehicle you buy cannot be a gas guzzling environment wrecker. It must slip into category A or B in the emissions table meaning no more than 120gCO2/km.

The specifics for each vehicle have yet to be firmed up but the maximum limits are as follows:

Do not forget to get a car insurance quote for your potential new car.

New ITV dates following state of alarm

The ITV testing stations were closed on the 14 March 2020 when the state of alarm was announced in Spain.

ITV certificate expiry dates were extended under a previous decree and set to expire after the end of the state of alarm plus 30 days. With the last of the Spanish provinces coming out of phase ‘0’ on Monday 18th May an official bulletin from the state of Spain was realeased. For those whose ITV certificates have expired, whilst the ITV stations have been closed, it provides clarity as to when you need to get your ITV renewals completed.

The state of alarm for calculating new ITV tests finishes at 00:00 on 24 May 2020.

Initial inspection dateExtension period once state of alarm finishes (calendar days)
Week 1: March 14-20 March30 days plus 15 additional days
Week 2: March 21-27 March30 days plus 2 periods of 15 days
Week 3: March 28 – 3 April30 days plus 3 periods of 15 days
Week n.30 days plus n 15-day periods.

For example, if your ITV expired on the Monday 21 March 2020 then the validity of your ITV certificate has been extended until 23 July 2020. The state of alarm, as far as ITV tests goes, expires 24 May 2020. So it is 24 May + 30 days + 2 periods of 15 days = 23rd July. You must complete your ITV test before that date.

You will need to book for the re-test with an ITV centre.

Note, that once your vehicle has passed the ITV test the renewal date will be based on when the original test expired this year. The period will not start from the date of the revised test.

Speeding and failure to wear a seatbelt increase during State of Alarm

Speeding and failure to wear a seatbelt increase during State of Alarm

39% increase in speeding offences during the state of alarm.

Increase in failure to wear seatbelts

The General Directorate of Traffic reminded drivers of the need to respect the established speed limits, in a period such as the state of alarm in which we are still in and in which vehicle mobility continues to be restricted.

A report confirms an increase in the speed of movement of light vehicles as they pass through speed control points. Specifically, during the state of alarm, the percentage of drivers who were traveling with excessive speed has increased by 39%.

Speed ​​is one of the main risk factors both in the occurrence of accidents and in the consequences thereof. It is essential that drivers respect the established limits. A safe speed protects not only the driver and the passengers who accompany him, but also the other people on the road.

This call for attention was made in the days before the Monday May 11th. Many territories pass into phase 1 in the Plan for the transition to a new normality and that will involve the incorporation of workers into their jobs. A lot of them will opt for the private vehicle for their commute to work at a time when there are  low levels of road intensities.


The number of fatal accidents has reduced as a result of the reduction in traffic. Between March 15 and May 7, the number of fatal accidents has decreased by 71%, and that of deceased persons has decreased by 69%. Thus, 49 people have died during the state of alarm, compared to 159 people who died in 2019.

The state of alarm has also produced an impact on the distribution of fatal accidents between different types of roads. Highways and expressways have registered 19 of the 49 people who died, 39% of the total, when this percentage is usually around 25%.

The most frequent accident during the state of alarm has been the departure from the road, which represents 31 of the 49 deaths, 65% of the total, compared to 35% in the same period of 2019. Distractions and speeding are the most common reason. Two risk factors which the low intensities of traffic that many roads present today may encourage.

Worry data shows that the use of seat belts in occupants of cars and vans has reduced during this period. Ten of the twenty-four people who died did not use a seat belt at the time of the accident.

Therefore, in order for the mobility during the Plan for the transition to a “New Normality” to be developed in a safe way, the General Directorate of Traffic reminded people of the importance of respecting speed limits, avoiding the use of mobile phones while driving and the use of safety accessories. These tips are equally important for driving within cities, whose streets are beginning to circulate an increasing number of pedestrians and cyclists.


Although it is true that you can leave homes to walk and do sports at established times, you cannot take the car to travel to second homes. Neither can you travel to beauty spots to walk or play sports.

As a result, the authorities continue to to have road checkpoints throughout Spain. The Guardia Civil continue to verify that the journey is legitimate under the Royal Decree of the state of alarm.

Whilst it might not be your intention to speed or commit any type of traffic infraction, it can happen. You can contract a service to ensure you receive automatic notification of fines by SMS text message or email. This will ensure you can take advantage of the discount of paying the fine early or to dispute it in case of an error.


Reale Seguros to provide 2.7 million to help mitigate the impact of Coronavirus in the most vulnerable groups

One of the many insurance companies we work with is doing its bit to help battle the effects of the Coronavirus pandemic in Spain.

Reale has launched a package of urgent measures, in collaboration with hospitals, nursing homes and NGOs, to help alleviate, in all phases of the crisis, those groups most affected. A series of projects and initiatives have been selected that aim to prevent, alleviate and help society psychologically and socially in the territories in which the insurer operates.

In total, the resources contributed by Reale Seguros and the Reale Group’s corporate foundation in Spain, the Reale Foundation, amount to 2.7 million euros.

As the first group of measures, 4 major initiatives have been launched with specific projects and will be launched throughout the week:


· Disinfection project and provision of material for Nursing Homes. A total of 6 nursing homes in Madrid and Guadalajara will receive material for healthcare personnel, and Reale Seguros will also pay for the disinfection of some of them:

  • San Celedonio Residence (Madrid)
  • Guindalera Residence (Madrid)
  • Princesa Residence (Madrid)
  • Amavir Arganzuela Residence (Madrid)
  • Amavir Usera Residence (Madrid)
  • Guadalajara Residence


Research Project with the Fundación Hospital La Paz. Establish a classification of COVID patients on admission that allows predicting their evolution in the first moments and effective treatment for those with a worse prognosis. In collaboration with the “Research Institute of the Hospital La Paz” together with the Emergency Service.


Project of Psychological Support in UCI´S. Hiring of 10 professionals for psychological support in intensive care units for murses, doctors and patients, generated by the COVID-19 crisis in hospitals in the Community of Madrid. There will be psychological and tele-psychological intervention through telephone, tablets and ad-hoc platform. With the HU-CI Project and the Official College of Psychology of Madrid (COPM).


Project “Home delivery of medicines for chronic patients”. Reale will participate by financing a program of Banco Farmacéutico volunteers for the home delivery of medications to people with chronic treatments, to patients with psychological / psychiatric treatment. It will be carried out in collaboration with DHL and the delivery area will be Vallecas (South of Madrid), which has also been affected by the slowdown in economic activity.

According to Ignacio Mariscal, CEO of Reale Seguros and Patron Delegate of the Reale Foundation, “within our commitment to society and through our corporate foundation, the Reale Foundation, we work to identify initiatives that help the entire population, and especially those groups with greater risk, relying, today more than ever, on our values ​​of cohesion and centrality of people at a time when society needs it. ”

Reale’s team «is already working on the identification and implementation of another package of measures that will have the same objective: #Now more than ever, the trust and closeness that the insurer wants to transfer is summarized in its slogan #TogetherMore that , together with #YoMeQuedoenCasa and # TodoSalaráBien, makes them participants in the Society as a whole.

Driving licences extended 60 days if they expire during the State of Alarm

How to change a UK driving licence to a Spanish driving licence

The Interior Ministry has issued an order extending the validity of driving licenses that expire during the state of alarm for 60 days. 

The order, published this Saturday in the Official State Gazette (BOE), states that “driving permits and licenses, as well as other administrative authorizations to drive, whose period of validity expires during the state of alarm, will be automatically extended while it lasts the same and up to sixty calendar days after its completion ”. 

The resolution, signed by the Minister of the Interior, Fernando Grande-Marlaska, also affects valid foreign driving licenses to drive in Spain. The law establishes that these permits are valid for six months from arrival in Spain and that, after that period, foreign drivers must exchange their country’s permit for a Spanish one. 

The order published today in the BOE establishes that the computation of those six months is paralysed during the state of alarm, and will resume once that period has ended. Therefore, foreign driving licenses for which the legal six months have not expired remain valid during the state of alarm. 

Essential vehicles exempt from some traffic restrictions

The resolution also affects certain vehicles that provide essential services such as the distribution of medicines, medical supplies or food. The Royal Decree, by which the state of alarm was established, indicates that the Minister of the Interior “may agree to close the circulation of roads or sections of them for reasons of public health, safety or fluidity of traffic or the restriction on access of certain vehicles for the same reasons. ” The order issued this Saturday indicates that these restrictions that may be established will not affect: 

a) Roadside assistance vehicles. 

b) Vehicles and road maintenance and maintenance services. 

c) Vehicles for the distribution of medicines and medical supplies. 

d) Urban solid waste collection vehicles. 

e) Vehicles destined for food distribution. 

f) The transportation of flux materials. 

g) Vehicles destined to transport fuels. 

h) Live livestock transport vehicles. 

i) The transport of perishable goods (fruits, fresh vegetables and others), provided that the perishable goods account for at least half of the vehicle’s payload capacity or occupy half of the vehicle’s payload volume. 

j) The vehicles of the State Society of Posts and Telegraphs. 

The restrictions will also not affect other vehicles “that help guarantee the supply of goods or the provision of essential services for the population.” The Royal Decree on the state of alarm already indicated that these restrictions did not affect emergency vehicles or police vehicles. The order signed by the Interior Minister has been issued, like the rest of the resolutions established under the Royal Decree on the state of alarm, in order to protect the health and safety of citizens, contain the progression of the disease and reinforce the public health system. The objective is to guarantee the supply of basic necessities and the provision of essential services for our society. 

To make this measure effective and guarantee unity and coordination in its execution, the order establishes that the General Director of Traffic, Pere Navarro, report the same “to those responsible for traffic in the Autonomous Communities, or, where appropriate, of the local entities that have assumed competences in the matter of traffic ”.