PSTEB head outlines some serious implications of New Road Traffic Act Loop Jamaica

The content originally appeared on: Jamaica News Loop News

The public is being reminded that under the new Road Traffic Act, the police is empowered to ticket a motorist for careless driving.

“Under the old Act, the police could not issue a ticket for careless driving. That has changed so that the police can now issue a ticket. Someone can actually pay a fine or attend court for that offence,” said head of the Public Safety and Traffic Enforcement Branch (PSTEB), Assistant Commissioner of Police Gary McKenzie.

He was speaking on the JIS discussion programme Get the Facts recently, where he outlined some of the crucial amendments to, and implications of, the Road Traffic Act and Regulations which were implemented on February 1, 2023.

McKenzie said the legislation is meant to protect the motoring public and pedestrians.

He said there is a demerit system in place, under which a driver can attract penalty points for committing certain offences.

The now dreaded breathalyser test (file photo).

“For example, if you disobey a continuous white line, there are two points that are attached to that. Now those points are registered on your driver’s licence when you pay the fine or if you go to court and are convicted,” he noted.

The points will be removed after 15 months, as long as fewer than 10 points are accumulated during the period.

McKenzie said there are circumstances under which persons can have their licence suspended.

“Now, it is very important for motorists to know that if you attract 10 (to 13) points, then your licence will be suspended for six months. And if it goes to 14 (to 19), then it’s one year (suspension),” he informed.

Additionally, he said, “There are some offences that it goes straight to one year (suspension). So, say for example, you are charged for driving with excess alcohol on your breath. If you are convicted, it is automatically 14 points, so your driver’s licence will be suspended for one year,” explained McKenzie.