South Africa’s new Aarto Act is set to be implemented on 1 July, and will affect the way local motorists are penalised for breaking the law.
As part of the Aarto (Administrative Adjudication of Road Traffic Offences) Act, drivers will be given demerit points when they break traffic rules.
Each time an offence is committed, a driver will receive a set amount of demerit points – depending on the severity of the offence.
If they commit multiple offences in a set period of time, they can have their driver’s licence suspended.
A breakdown of the licence suspension conditions is below:
- Total points: A maximum of 15 demerit points can be received by a driver. After this, they will be disqualified from driving their vehicle.
- Duration: The duration of the disqualification will equal three months for every point over the 15-point limit.
If a driver receives three licence disqualifications under the Aarto system, their licence will be taken away.
To get their driver’s licence back once their disqualification period is over, they will need to apply and earn a learner’s licence – and then a full driver’s licence.
With the Aarto Act set to be implemented in the coming months, many South African drivers are curious as to which offences will see them receive demerit points.
To help answer this question, the table below provides a breakdown of several common traffic offences – along with how many demerit points are associated with them.
Below the table, the government gazette with the full demerit schedule has been provided.
Failure to comply and licences
|Failure to stop vehicle on the command of a traffic officer||N/A||6|
|Failure to comply with the direction of a police officer who is directing traffic||R2,000||3|
|Operated a vehicle on a public road with expired licence||R2,000||3|
|Operated a vehicle on a public road without a licence||R2,000||3|
|Driving a vehicle with a learner’s licence with no licensed driver in the car||R3,500||5|
Roadworthiness and lights
|Removed or altered components of vehicle affecting its roadworthiness||R3,500||5|
|Operated a vehicle with a brake that is not in good working order||R3,500||5|
|Operated a vehicle with a damaged lamp (light)||R1,000||1|
|Operated a vehicle between sunset and sunrise or during unfavourable visibility conditions without lamps||R1,500||2|
|Stop lamp (light) not emitting a red light when in use||R1,000||1|
|Driver did not ensure that all passengers were wearing seatbelts||R1,500||1|
|Vehicle not fitted with seatbelts correctly||R1,000||1|
|Seatbelts not working properly||R500||1|
Traffic signs and speed limits
|Failed to obey stop sign||R1,500||2|
|Failed to obey yield sign||R1,000||1|
|Failed to obey directions at a four-way stop sign||R1,500||2|
|Failed to comply with directions of a road traffic sign by not maintaining or exceeding the specified speed limit||R1,000||1|
|Failed to comply with directions of a road traffic sign by not passing on the left-hand side||R500||1|
The full demerit point schedule is outlined in more detail in the government gazette below.