All noise, no action from Aarto

2012-12-31 08:03

JOHANNESBURG - Only a tiny percentage of Gautengers pay their traffic fines up front, according to reports.

The annual report of the Road Traffic Infringement Agency (RTIA) revealed that drivers on the national contraventions register owe R1.6-billion in outstanding traffic penalties issued in the Tshwane and Johannesburg metros, City Press reported.


RTIA said drivers in Tshwane and Johannesburg racked up R980-million in penalties between April 2011 and March 2012 but have paid only R86-million (nine percent) of that total.

Tshwane and Johannesburg were the only metro municipalities which participated in the Administrative Adjudication of Road Traffic Offences (Aarto) pilot phase.

Aarto makes provision for a contravention register that captures outstanding traffic penalties countrywide. Aarto will also prevent drivers with outstanding traffic fines from renewing their vehicle and driving licences*.

Transport minister Ben Martins is expected to announce the introduction of the Aarto Act in early 2013. RTIA was set up to implement the act.

Of the 1.8-million fines issued in Johannesburg and Tshwane in the past financial year, only 251 125 (14%) were paid.

*Wheels24 asks: ''Is that smart?" People, being generally non-law abiding in South Africa, will simply carry on driving. Should they then be in a collision, unlicensed, they will also be uninsured for both their vehicle and injuries and, worse, those of other road users involved in the crash.


  • bart.mitchell.393 - 2012-12-31 09:43

    Yes so ? Oh until proven guilty in a court of law you cannot touch my cars or drivers licence renewal.

  • peter.jordaan.5 - 2012-12-31 09:50

    Make it law that all traffic fines are payable to charity and none of it is too be used to pay salaries or any other expense of Aarto. Watch what happens to this whole initiative. The desire to hide behind trees and all sorts of devious things rather than do what they are supposed to do I.e. direct and help traffic will change and then the public will hold them in much greater esteem. At the moment the public can see it for what it is a scam. Yet the politicians want to persue it ... why? .... has long fingers got something to do with it?

  • joe.soap.39545464 - 2012-12-31 10:38

    Well - I've got a outstanding fine of R250, but EVERY single time I want to pay the thing, their "system" is off-line and the "operator" behind the funny machine with a screen say's 'eish'.... well done !!! AGREE @ peter.jordaan.5 !!! Also sad that Gauteng according to 'them' IS THE WHOLE SA !!??

  • joe.soap.39545464 - 2012-12-31 10:40

    Well - I've got a outstanding fine of R250, but EVERY single time I want to pay the thing, their "system" is off-line and the "operator" behind the funny machine with a screen say's 'eish'.... well done !!! AGREE @ peter.jordaan.5 !!! Also sad that Gauteng according to 'them' IS THE WHOLE SA !!??

  • m.adrian.schofield - 2012-12-31 17:28

    If the City of Joburg did not break the law when issuing the fines, more of them would be paid.

  • Sherman Amos - 2013-01-01 18:23

    There are two immediate problems with the SA road safety environment, the first is the defiance mentality of road users that requires 24/7 policing the second the lack of credible, coherent, scientifically based and sustainable road traffic law enforcement. The majority of SA road users will attempt to circumvent any form of prosecution by inter alia, cloning and removing number plates to avoid being caught especially by means of camera (notwithstanding that the majority of these if not all are placed randomly and not scientically placed based on accident research stats) slowing down where there are visible and known cameras and speeding up after passing these, not paying traffic fines and challenge the adjudication process to its limits (there is nothing wrong in doing this where this is warranted). This is a negative attitude and a road user cultural problem. The failure to comply with basic road safety rules for example keep left and pass right, wear safety belts, proper use of indicators indicating what you intend doing rather than what you are doing etc. Law enforcement needs national and strategic leadership void of rhetoric and threats and returning to basic enforcement of the rules of the road. This can be achieved by interr alia national regular year long and random alcohol testing at strategic locations and not only over Easter and Christmas if drunk driving is the main cause of fatal accidents. Less emphasis on speed kills as this is a misnomer and unqualified. Speed together with inexperience, poor visibility, unroadworthy vehicle, poor road infrastructure is what kills. There should be a lesser fight for constitutional rights and more emphasis on road user responsibility and safety first. What is mostly needed is a year long proactive law enforcement approach similar to that given to rhino poaching rather than a reaction to the current road traffic fatality stats. The paying of a traffic fine, rates and taxes are indicative of a responsible society.

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