15 February 2007
South Africa is piloting a licence points demerit system in Pretoria, expected to be rolled out nationally in 2008, in order to curb the number of accidents and deaths on the country’s roads.
The system is designed to force motorists to change their behaviour when it comes to practises such speeding, driving under the influence of alcohol, wearing seat belts and maintaining their vehicles.
It also aims to get unlicensed and insufficiently trained drivers off South Africa’s roads.
Under the system, drivers will receive demerits for traffic infringements, and have their licences suspended if they accumulate more than a certain number of demerit points. Serious repeat offenders could also have their licences permanently revoked.
“If drivers are found to be insufficiently trained, they may be faced with driver re-training, especially after serious crashes or repeat violations,” Transport Minister Jeff Radebe said ahead of the introduction of the pilot system in Tshwane municipality in January.
At the same time, the system rewards drivers for good behaviour, with demerits being removed after periods of no infringement.