by VR Sreeraman on  October 12, 2008 at 1:07 PM Environmental Health
 Beijing Introduces New Traffic Restriction to Improve Air Quality
A new traffic restriction went into effect in Beijing from Saturday, which is expected to help sustain the hard-won smooth traffic and good air quality during the Olympic Games.

Under the new traffic restriction, 70 percent of government vehicles, as well as all corporate and private cars, will take turns off the roads one out of the five weekdays as of Oct. 11, according to the Beijing Municipal Committee of Communications.

Cars whose number plates end with 1 or 6 will be taken off roads on Monday, while those ending with 2 or 7 will be banned on Tuesday, 3 or 8 on Wednesday, 4 or 9 on Thursday and 5 or 0 on Friday. The ban does not apply on weekends.

According to Xinhua, the ban will be applicable within the Fifth Ring Road inclusive, from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. for private cars and round the clock for government and corporate vehicles.

Violators will be fined 100 Yuan (14.7 U.S. dollars).

The new restriction will be implemented on a trial basis for six months until April 10, but does not apply to police wagons, ambulances, fire engines, buses, taxies and other public service vehicles.

As of Oct. 1, 30 percent of government vehicles have been sealed off.

The new traffic restriction is expected to take some 800,000 cars off the road everyday, according to the Beijing Municipal Committee of Communications.

The latest government statistics show that Beijing has about 3.5 million vehicles. In addition, about 1,200 new vehicles take on the road everyday.

Source: ANI

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