The average tourist will only have a brush with the law if they're robbed by a bag-snatcher or pickpocket, or if their car is towed away.

In an emergency (to report theft, robbery, assault or accidents) call 113 or 112 – the latter has a reply service in a number of languages.

Italy's Police Forces

There are six national police forces in Italy, as well as a number of local police forces. The main ones are shown in the table.

polizia di stato (civil national police)

Jurisdiction

thefts, visa extensions and permits; based at the local questura (police station)

Uniform

powder-blue trousers with a fuchsia stripe and a navy-blue jacket

arma dei carabinieri (military police)

Jurisdiction

general crime, public order and drug enforcement (often overlapping with the polizia di stato)

Uniform

black uniform with a red stripe

polizia municipale (aka vigili urbani; municipal police)

Jurisdiction

parking tickets, towed cars, public order, petty crime

Uniform

varies according to province