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Department of the Air Force
Military Personnel Flight (786 FSS/ DPM)
Ramstein Germany 66877
Figuring out the best way to get around is important when you’re in a new installation. It’s useful to understand the various regulations, local laws as well as license and registration requirements. Whether you need a driver’s license, transport a car overseas or want help buying a car, there are people to assist you at your new installation. Check out the topics below to find information and regulations on vehicles and registration at your base.
Driving in the KMC requires that you pay strict attention to German laws/road signs. The driving speed may also decrease and increase rapidly, especially on highways called Autobahns. Due to the amount of vehicles traveling there may be congestion. Accidents of course cause additional delays. It is beneficial to keep your radio tuned to the American Forces Network (AFN) FM 105.1 for the latest road conditions and traffic updates.
A common vehicle problem is not having two license plates mounted in the front and rear of the vehicle, installing prohibited lights, tires that extend beyond the wheel rim, and failure to maintain tires. Ensure your vehicle will adhere to German guidelines by reviewing the USAFE manual.
Service members and their families will want to understand the local laws on registration and licensing. For more information visit the Ramstein vehicle registration site at https://www.ramstein.af.mil/About/Fact-Sheets/Display/Article/303632/vehicle-registration/
Seat belts are mandatory at all times. Failure of you, or your passengers, to wear a seatbelt can result in a fine.
Use of child safety restraint systems is mandatory while operating a POV in USAREUR. Germany has authorized the use of Department of Transportation (DOT) approved child restraint systems.
Inspect your car for any leaks, loose or worn steering and suspension components, properly working lights, gauges, horn, defroster, exhaust, speedometer, windshield wipers, mismatched, worn, or oversized tires, and missing body components (bumpers, grills, etc.).
Call a POV inspection station at your current location prior to shipping your vehicle to determine requirements. Keep in mind that this will be based only a verbal description of your vehicle; so needs may vary or important facts may be left out that may be found during a VISUAL inspection. (A good example: extra wide tires. If the tires extend past the fender well, your vehicle would fail.) The bottom line is, YOUR VEHICLE MUST PASS INSPECTION TO BE REGISTERED!
Auto insurance in Germany is expensive! Liability alone can cost up to four times more than areas in the U.S. Drivers under 25 years of age pay as much as $1,200 or more per year for liability. BE PREPARED TO PAY MORE FOR FULL-COVERAGE. Some stateside companies offer overseas insurance especially if they cater to the military forces. Check with your current policyholder for more information.
You may qualify for a discount on insurance if you have an accident-free driving record of ten years or longer. Request accident-free letters from your insurance company before you leave the States.
Emission Requirements for Germany
Many large cities in Germany have established "environmental protection zones" (Umweltzone) where motor vehicles that do not bear a decal certifying that they meet acceptable emission standards are prohibited. The new law requires that all motor vehicles bear an appropriate emissions decal on their lower right (passenger) side of their windshields to enter a protection zone. Failure to display a decal in a protection zone can result in a 40 euro fine. USAREUR drivers can get the decals at the vehicle registration offices. The law outlines four emissions categories.
Vehicles in Category 1 will bear no decal, and cannot be driven in a protection zone.
A red decal will be provided for vehicles in Category 2 that allows the vehicle to be driven for five years, during which time those vehicles must be converted to meet Category 3 or Category 4 emission standards.
Category 3 vehicles will be designated by a yellow decal, and Category 4 vehicles will bear a green decal and have no restrictions.
The basic rules for the emission categories are:
Drivers whose vehicles have a lower rating than Category 4 can have their vehicles converted to meet higher standards and get a new emissions decal from approved repair or inspection facility.
For more information, call the Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) customer service office at 314-489-7542 or 0611-143-542-2021 or https://www.ramstein.af.mil/About/Fact-Sheets/Display/Article/303632/vehicle-registration/
REQUIREMENTS TO DRIVE
Drivers MUST have a U.S. Army Europe license to drive in Germany, no exception. An international driver's license is not acceptable, nor can you legally drive a rental car while you wait for your vehicle to arrive without one.
Driving in Germany is a privilege, not a right. All personnel assigned to the KMC who require driving privileges:
Note: An international driver's license alone is not an acceptable option to operate any USAREUR plated vehicle
ACTIVE DUTY AND DEPENDENTS
All Active duty members must take the test prior to arrival. Dependents are strongly encouraged to take the test prior to arrival
·Visit the Joint Knowledge Online (JKO) website; (Non Cac) https://secure.jten.mil/jkohd/sponsored.jsp or (CAC Login) http://jko.jten.mil to complete course numbers (prefix USA) #007 and #007-B. All personnel, Military, Civilians, and Dependents will take the test on the Joint Knowledge Online (JKO) website. The site offers the ability for all personnel to take the test at home without a Common Access Card to login.
Contact the Ramstein USAREUR Driver's Testing section at DSN 314-480-5534, Comm +49-6371-47-5534 or https://www.ramstein.af.mil/About/Fact-Sheets/Display/Article/303616/driving-in-germany/.
Option 1: Testing prior to PCS (Required for active duty)
·All active duty AF members with projected assignments to Ramstein or one of the supported Globally Separated Units (GSUs) are required to test in advance. When members arrive, they will proceed to the Ramstein Licensing Center to get their temporary license; 48 hours after test completion. Please bring your certificate of completion, valid stateside driver's license, orders, and a debit/credit card for the $10 payment. Contact drivers testing for any questions about the new procedures at DSN 480-5534 or Comm +49-6371-47-5534. We are located at Bldg. 2106, Room 201 on Ramstein AB.
Option 2: Testing upon arrival.
·All dependents that did not test prior to arrival must complete the test on a personal computer. After completion, wait 48 hours for the score to be updated in the system before going to the Ramstein Licensing Center to get your temporary license. Please bring your certificate of completion, valid stateside driver's license, orders, and a debit/credit card or check/money order for the $20 payment (no cash). Contact drivers testing for any questions about the new procedures at DSN 480-5534 or Comm 06371-47-5534. We are located at Bldg. 2106 Rm 201 on Ramstein AB.
Option 3: European or NATO Transfer
Upon arrival, visit the 86th Vehicle Readiness Squadron Driver Testing Office in Bldg. 2106, Room 201 to submit your driver's license application and receive your U.S. Forces Certificate of License. For additional information, call DSN 314-480-5534 or commercial 011-49-6371-47-5534.
Visiting Family Members or Friends
The first step is to have the visitor(s) get an International Driver's License prior to arrival. When your visitor(s) arrive, take them to the Customs office on Ramstein, Bldg. 305 Rm 14. The Customs office will need the following:
Once the above criterion has been met, the Customs Office will issue an Exception to Policy letter. The visitor must carry the letter, passport and International Driver's License whenever they are operating a USAREUR plated vehicle.
For further information contact the Customs Office at DSN: 480-3720.
Ramstein’ s Drivers Testing Station is not authorized for use by US Army personnel (Soldiers, Civilians, and Contactors) or Family Members per the Army Garrison Commander.
Army personnel will utilize the Drivers Testing Station located at Kleber Kaserne in Building 3213, Room 207.
Mon. through Fri.7:30 a.m.to noon and 12:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. DSN: 483-7332
Commercial Dialing: +49 631-411-7332
Local Laws include:
German law prohibits the use of hand-held cell phones when operating POVs or riding bicycles. Hands-free devices must be used while operating a motor vehicle on ALL military installations worldwide, throughout Germany and most European countries.
Information regarding Motorcycles
Motorcycles front turn signal lights must be positioned 100 millimeters from the edge of the headlight, 170 millimeters from each other (from the edge of the turn-signal lights), and 350 millimeters above the ground (from the low edge of the turn-signal light). Flush mount turn signals do not meet this requirement. Also, front turn signals must be amber.
Rear turn-signal lights must be positioned 120 millimeters from each other (from the edge of the turn-signal lights) and 350 millimeters from the edge of the turn-signal light to the ground. Integrated turn signals and brake lights do not meet this requirement. Also, rear turn signal lights may be amber or red.
Motorcycles and POV exhaust levels cannot exceed 95 decibels.
The following is a short list of common reasons why POVs fail inspection:
The purpose of the POV inspection is to keep personnel safe on the European roads and to ensure they meet the standards set forth in USAREUR regulation 190-1.
Inspectors will not inspect a vehicle that does not have a valid registration.
Complete AE Form 190-1AA or 0190-1O.
POVs must carry a first-aid kit that meets or exceeds German legal. Kits must not be more than five years old. Effective January 2022: First aid kits must include two individually wrapped face masks in the kit. (Mask type: DIN EN 14683 TYPE1 or higher standard such as KN95/FFP2) Masks must be stored in the first aid kit, it is not sufficient to carry the masks anywhere else in the vehicle.
POVs must carry an approved portable, reflectorized warning triangle.
POVs must carry a reflective vest
Vehicles weighing more than 3.5 metric tons will be rejected if they are not equipped with an approved warning triangle, four-way flasher, or portable flashing lamp.
For questions regarding POV inspections call 314-489-6400.
Lastly, To ship your vehicle you need at least 90 days left on your registration.
MotorcyclesMotorcycle riding in Germany is some of the best in the world. It is very popular with Americans and Germans alike. Riding can be fun, but it can also be dangerous. To mitigate some of the inherent risk associated with motorcycle riding, the EUCOM Commander and the 86 AW Commander have implemented a few specific requirements. Within Europe, all riders must wear an ECE 22.05 approved helmet. "DOT only" type helmets do not meet European testing standards. ECE 22.05 certification may be found under the DOT stamp or a tag may be under the pads. A rider must have Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) training less than three years old. Sportbike riders must have had a sportbike specific course between 60 and 365 days after their initial course. Due to limited availability of MSF classes in Germany, it is strongly recommended riders obtain certifications before arriving in Germany.
All vehicles entering Ramstein Air Base are subject to spot checks by the security police. Drug and/or bomb checks are often encountered when entering or leaving local air bases.
Ramstein, Kapaun, Sembach, and Miesau Army Depot are restricted to all those not holding a US Military ID, NATO ID, or passport.
Report all accidents on base to the Ramstein Law Enforcement Desk at DSN 314-480-2050 or 011-49-6371-47-2050. Off base accidents must be reported to the Ramstein Law Enforcement desk AND German authorities if an injury or damage to property is involved.
Ambulance - 112
Fire - 112
Police - 110