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Shenzhen to tighten regulation of parcel and food delivery couriers to reduce traffic

The boom in China’s food and parcel delivery sector has triggered a surge in road accidents.

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Shenzhen, the coastal city in China’s southern Guangdong province, will apply its current rules regulating drivers and automobiles to parcel and food delivery couriers to reduce traffic accidents, China’s state media CCTV reported. The new regulation will take effect from January 1, 2020.

The Chinese driver’s license is running based on a point system where drivers have a total of 12 points per year. Any violation of traffic rules will add demerit points from one to twelve to the driver’s record, depending on the severity level of the violation. Drivers will be disqualified from driving after accumulating 12 demerit points within one year.

Couriers from all the parcel and food delivery companies will be asked to register their personal and vehicle information on a WeChat mini program starting from December 26. They will be issued a traffic information card, which couriers can use to access their violation history as well as the demerit points remained.

Couriers will also be issued a smart license for their vehicles with a chip installed inside. Violations of the traffic rules will be automatically captured by the sensor camera installed at the crossroads and uploaded to the system. Demerit points will be added to the courier’s record according to different violations. For example, riding in the reverse direction will cost three points while ignoring the traffic lights will cost the courier six demerit points.

The boom in China’s food and parcel delivery sector has triggered a surge in road accidents as couriers often rush to meet time limits. Shenzhen authorities announced that over 110,000 non-motor vehicle traffic violations had occurred during the first 20 days in December, while over 12,000 violations were related to food and parcel delivery couriers, accounting for more than 10% of all cases.

Companies in food and parcel delivery business including Meituan, Ele.me, SF Express, and Shansong have signed a letter of commitment on Monday, state media Xinhua reported. These companies promised to avoid violating traffic rules and optimize their management and operation in a bid to create a safer environment for couriers.