If the Toll Authority of Jamaica has its way, pedestrians could be fined for walking on the country’s toll roads.
In fact, the authority is pushing for legislation that would give it the power to impose such fines, including fines on motorists found guilty of tailgating.
The authority also wants the legislative authority to regulate advertisement on toll roads, as well as for it to be mandatory for future concessionaires to pay toll monitoring fees to it.
Transport and Mining Minister, Audley Shaw, shared that the authority was advocating for such powers during his contribution to the 2022/23 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on Wednesday.
In the United States, individuals found walking on the roads in a way deemed to be dangerous to themselves and the motoring public face possible jaywalking charges, which come with a fine.
A fence had to be erected at a section of the Portmore leg of the toll road to prevent pedestrians from risking their lives when they attempt to cross the busy thoroughfare.
Meanwhile, Shaw said, “The authority is further seeking empowerment to apply monetary sanctions on toll operators for non-compliance in the remedying of any defect/damage to the toll road infrastructure.”
He also said that the escape lanes on the North-South Highway are being renovated to bring them closer to the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials standards.
The minister lamented that the issue of responsible road use and safety remains a major concern for the country.
He said that despite the challenges, there is renewed hope with the launch of the United Nations Second Decade of Action for Road Safety, which Jamaica has signed on to.
“Adoption of the Safe Systems will have a positive and wide-ranging effect on road safety policy and strategic outlook, as it requires shared systemic responsibility for ensuring safe roads, safe road users, safe speeds, safe vehicles, and quality post-crash care,” said Shaw.
He noted that the United Nations Second Decade of Action aims to reduce road traffic fatalities by 50 per cent globally.