Sat | Dec 9, 2023

Judge urges traffic offenders to copy or take photos of tickets before they fade

Published:Monday | November 20, 2023 | 12:31 AMAinsworth Morris/Staff Reporter -
Nicole Kellier, senior judge of Traffic Court.

With multiple offenders going to traffic courts with faded thermal paper tickets, at least one court judge is pleading for offenders to copy or photograph their tickets immediately after receiving them.

The concerns about fading of tickets has surfaced since the change in the type of paper being issued electronically, since July 2021, under the new Traffic Ticket Management System (TTMS).

Nicole Kellier, senior judge in the Traffic Court, while giving an address at the Bethel Baptist Church in St Andrew on Sunday, expressed her deep concern about people turning up to court or tax offices with blank or faded paper.

Kellier was speaking during a forum under the theme 'The New Road Traffic Act & You: Ready For The Road?'

"I must speak about the new ticket. It is like the bank receipt. You ought to have it photocopied immediately, because it is going to fade," Kellier said.

"A lot of us have come to the court and say, 'I received the ticket, but by the time I get to pay it at the tax office, it fade, so what I advise you is to have it photocopied as early as possible. Take a photograph of the ticket, and so within the 30 days that you have to pay this ticket, you would have some information to present to the Tax Administration of Jamaica."

She reminded offenders to pay their fines either online or in person at the TAJ because it is not only cheaper for them but relieves the overburdened court system.

With the new Road Traffic Act making it a ticketable offence for persons using mobile or smartphones while driving, another new offence which annoys Kellier when she has to attend to matters regarding it in traffic court is the use of phones while driving.

"Some of the accidents we see on the road are based on the use of cellular phones, so Section 121 and 122 prohibits the use of electronic communication and visual device while driving, except when they are in hands-free mode," she said.

"Hands-free mode meaning that you're not touching the cellphone any at all.

"Some persons will say when they attend court, that 'I had it on my lap. I had it in my mind'." What Section 121 says to you is that, you're not to use the cellphone or you're not to operate the motor vehicle and have the cellphone in your possession, so there you go!" she said.

She reminded that the penalty at the tax office is $10,000 while the penalty at traffic court is $30,000.