Why Japanese Traffic Violations are So Strictly Enforced

Why Japanese Traffic Violations Are So Strictly Enforced Car

In a past article, I wrote about how to avoid traffic violations, but I was curious if traffic violations are strictly enforced in Japan in the first place. In this article, I asked an acquaintance of mine who is a police officer about the reason, and I will share the information with you.

Traffic Safety Week

Traffic Safety Week

Traffic Safety Week is held twice a year, once in spring and once in autumn, with the aim of preventing traffic accidents by spreading the idea of traffic safety among the public, encouraging people to observe traffic rules and practice proper traffic manners, and promoting people’s own efforts to improve the road traffic environment. 

During the week of traffic safety, each officer has a quota for the amount of traffic infractions he or she must enforce, and cops who have not met their quota must report to work even on holidays.
However, it is not possible to say that they have done their official duty of policing on their day off, so if they are able to crack down on traffic violations, they can later transfer the day off to a work day on their paperwork.
If they don’t find any traffic violations and can’t crack down on them, they can’t resort it as a work day even though they were actually standing on a street corner in a police uniform, and the day off will remain a work day on the paperwork. In short, you just went to work on your day off for service.
Also, there are supervisors who try to increase the number of arrests in order to be evaluated. That’s why police officers on duty are all about making the numbers count. For example, they carefully keep an eye on vehicles that jaywalk at intersections where many people jaywalk, or they track vehicles coming out of pubs.

Rather than attempting to prevent them, they are more concerned in locating and arresting those who commit such infractions.

If the objective is to truly minimize traffic accidents, it would be more successful to show police vehicles rushing and make respectful statements, but the attitude of daring people to break the law and then capturing them continues. Also  they need to commit to arrest people so that they would get evaluated.

What is it about traffic infractions that makes police officers hide behind them? 

What is it about traffic infractions that makes police officers hide behind them?

The major reason for concealing is because no one will break the law if the police officer does not hide.

 Basically, when you are conducting a traffic stop, you hide in a position where the other person cannot see you. No one intentionally violates the law in front of a police officer.

If you break the law, you will face consequences, thus no one wants to break the law in front of a cop. Most of the time, people commit violations without realizing that a police officer is standing there. 

For example, if a police car is visible to the other driver, everyone will notice the presence of the police car and will be more careful about speed and signals than usual.

Even in the presence of a stop sign, everyone will brake harder than normal.

In the end, this means that even if you enforce the law, no one will breach it; therefore the value of executing the law will be decreased.



Traffic Safety Week is also a tough time to crack down on speeding. However, there are cases where people speed and get away from the police and are not arrested. A license plate number check to identify the car and a facial check to identify the driver are both required when arresting a fast motorcycle driver. If you flee from a police car, the license plate number can be used to identify the vehicle, but the driver cannot be recognized, therefore you will not be detained if you manage to get away.

Even if the cops recall your license plate number and call you later, if you insist on not driving, the cops will be unable to arrest you due to the lack of photographic proof. However, if you are chased by a police car, the police car will usually call a nearby police car for backup and pin you down. You have to dodge them and get away.

If you are caught, you will be charged with obstruction of justice as well as all other violations except speeding.

Therefore, it is extremely difficult to escape.Also you would face a big consequence.