THE Administrative Adjudication of Road Traffic Offences (Aarto) Bill has become law.

This Act has brought major changes to the driving system in Mzansi.

Below, we explore how the Act will affect you as a driver.

The Act introduces a demerit system, through which drivers start with zero demerits.

Then, every time a driver is caught committing a traffic offence, a point is accumulated.

The maximum points a driver can get is 12.

Should a driver get more than 12 points, there’ll be a three-month suspension of their licence for each point past the limit.

Should the licence be suspended three times, it will be cancelled.

But the demerit system applies differently for drivers who obey the rules of the road.

One point will be deducted for every three months the driver doesn’t commit further road offences.

IN SOME INSTANCES, THE DEMERITS COME WITH A FINE

  • Driving an unregistered vehicle: R500 fine, one point.
  • Driving an unlicensed vehicle: R500 fine, one point.
  • Driving when the licence plate isn’t visible: R500 fine, one point.
  • Driving without a licenceR1 250 fine, four points.
  • Not wearing a seat belt while driving: R250 fine, no points.
  • Drunk driving: Six points and possible court action.
  • Driving while using a cellphone: R500 fine, one point.) Skipping a stop sign (cars): R500 fine, one point.
  • Skipping a stop sign (buses, trucks): R750 fine, two points.
  • Running a red light (cars): R500 fine, one point.
  • Running a red light (buses, trucks): R750 fine, two points.
  • Failure to let a pedestrian cross: R500 fine, one point.
  • Doing 81-to-99km/h in a 60km/h zone: R750 fine, two points.
  • Doing 100km/h-plus in a 60km/h zone: Six points and possible court action.
  • Doing 106-to-119km/h in an 80km/h zone: R1 000 fine, three points.
  • Doing 120km/h-plus in an 80km/h zone: Six points and possible court action.
  • Doing 121-to-130km/h in a 100km/h zone: R750 fine, two points.
  • Doing 131-to-139km/h in a 100km/h zone: R1 250 fine, four points.
  • Doing 140km/h-plus in a 100km/h zone: Six points and possible court action.
  • Doing 131-to-140km/h in a 120km/h zone: R250 fine, no points.
  • Doing 141-to-150km/h in a 120km/h zone: R750 fine, two points.
  • Doing 151-to-159km/h in a 120km/h zone: R1 250 fine, four points.
  • Doing 160km/h-plus in 120km/h zone: Six points and possible court action.
  • Overtaking on a solid line (cars): R500 fine, one point.
  • Overtaking on a solid line (buses, trucks): R750 fine, two points.

In addition to possibly cost the driver, a potential R13 750 (total amount of fines) and driver’s licence, the new system could also impact the motorist’s insurance premium.

Said Old Mutual’s Christelle Colman: “The demerit system could potentially be linked to an underwriting criterion as it reflects driving behaviour.

“Drivers with a poor record on this system could face higher premiums, but that would be at the discretion of each company.”

This also potentially means people who abide by the rules would pay less insurance premiums.

Another insurance-related concern is if a driver loses their licence and have an incident needing them to make an insurance claim, it will be rejected because the car would have been operated without a licence at the time.

Although the system hasn’t yet been implemented, it’s best to abide by the rules of the road.