Reports of traffic fines sent to offenders’ email inboxes denied

Reports indicating South Africans’ traffic fines may be sent via email following amendments to the law on the Administrative Adjudication of Road Traffic (Aarto), which were published in the Government Gazette, are incorrect.

The amendments to Aarto do not indicate the state is attempting to adjust the original law to allow for the notifications of fines to be delivered through email, according to the Justice Project South Africa (JPSA).

The Beeld newspaper reported the introduction of Aarto has only been implemented in the cities Johannesburg and Pretoria, leaving out the rest of the country due to administrative issues.

Furthermore the Aarto penalty points system, which was proposed 13 years ago, has not yet been implemented because of criticism of the legislation and legal disputes.

Johannesburg metro police previously told Beeld it does not have a budget to enable them sending notices by registered mail, which is currently the only means to serve a notice of prosecution without human delivery.

Concerns raised by Wheels24 include the “prevalence of phishing scams and email filters”. An example of the problem with email filters include spam, which would create a problem should fines be marked as spam.

“The state’s email address would become known as an originator of spam messages and its emails would automatically be deleted or moved to a specific folder,” said Wheels24.

The final notice currently sent via registered “snail-mail” serves to prove the fine was delivered. Traditionally the responsible driver must sign for it as well as provide proof of address.

“If your traffic infringement remains unopened in your inbox, could the state challenge your receipt of the fine?” asked Wheel24.

Members of the public are invited to email their comments, before March 21, to John Makgatho at [email protected] or Ngwako Thoka at [email protected]

Posted in: Internet

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