Written byNewsBytes Staff ·
The debate surrounding the merits of Delhi's proposed odd-even scheme for cars has continued to rage amid worsening air quality.
In such a scenario, it's crucial to examine a similar scheme introduced by Beijing, an Asian capital often compared to Delhi in terms of air quality.
Since the 2008 Olympics, Beijing has implemented a strict traffic restriction policy. Here's all about it.
Two groups of cars aren't allowed to travel on roads on every weekday depending on the last digit of their license plates.
Numbers 1 and 6 can't drive on Monday, 2 and 7 on Tuesday, 3 and 8 on Wednesday, 4 and 9 on Thursday and 5 and 0 on Friday.
Restricted cars can't drive on Beijing's Fifth Ring Road between 7am and 8pm.
The traffic restrictions are in place permanently regardless of air quality.
Separately, a Delhi-style odd-even scheme is imposed if a Red Alert is issued in case the Air Quality Index (AQI) crosses 450.
Vehicle emissions contributed over 30% of the city's PM 2.5 (particulate matter), according to the Beijing Municipal Bureau of Environmental Protection.
"Many car owners had rarely used public transport and then realized that once a week they had to," a Beijing resident said.
"My car is not allowed on the roads on Mondays, so I have now learned the subway and bus routes I need. It is not very difficult to manage," he added.
Violators have to pay heavy fines of 200RMB (Rs. 2,000) and have three points added to their driving license.
A license is suspended after over 12 points are accumulated over a 12-month period.
Drivers with suspended licenses must go through driving school again and apply for a fresh license.
Meanwhile, license plates are issued to new car owners via a lottery system.
Each week, only one in 783 applicants can successfully register a car in Beijing.
However, registration rules are eased for those buying electric vehicles to incentivize their sales.
Beijing hopes to restrict the number of cars within city limits to 60 lakhs by the end of 2017.
It's also ramping up its public transport system.
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