What is the Red-Light Enforcement Camera System?
The red-light camera system is a road safety technology which provides 24-hour monitoring of an intersection for red light breaches by motorists. When a vehicle is captured breaching the red light, a photograph and video recording are electronically transferred to the Traffic Enforcement Centre (TEC), where a team of highly trained and certified analysts and inspection officers will review the footage to determine and confirm whether a breach of the red-light traffic signal did occur. Once determined and confirmed, a citation notice will be generated and delivered to you via TTPOST courier service.
Why is a Red-Light Camera Enforcement System needed?
In Trinidad and Tobago, within the last two decades the breach of red lights at intersections is ranked as one of the major contributing factors resulting in road accidents and fatalities. The Ministry of Works and Transport conducted a pilot project of the red-light camera technology to detect motorists breaching the red lights at the intersection of Wrightson Road and Dock Road, in the vicinity of the Waterfront Centre.
During this pilot, the Ministry recorded an average of 4,000 red light camera violations from only one (1) red-light camera intersection, with an average total of 48,000 annual red-light breaches at said intersection.
During this project, it was significantly apparent that red-light violations were a common occurrence in Trinidad & Tobago and highlighted the need for effective enforcement with a modern legislative framework.
Key Agencies involved
While the Ministry of Works & Transport operated the pilot of this initiative, the nationwide launch and prosecuting red-light traffic violations requires the active involvement of other key agencies:
- The Traffic Enforcement Centre (TEC) – for monitoring;
- The Trinidad & Tobago Postal Service (TTPOST) – to deliver and process payments of citation notices;
- The Judiciary of Trinidad & Tobago – should a notice to contest be filed by the traffic violator;
- The Licensing Authority – for relevant action should the traffic violator fail to pay their ticket fine;
- The Trinidad & Tobago Police Services, Licensing Authority & Traffic Warden Division – for Inspection Officers; and
- The Trinidad & Tobago Bureau of Standards – to ensure proper maintenance and compliance of red-light cameras with international standards.
How does the Red-Light Camera Enforcement System work?
Previously, the legislation required a law enforcement officer to observe the breach of the red-light traffic signal, while on patrol for the law enforcement process to occur. The officer then has to use his or her discretion, based on the circumstances, to issue a ticket or a summons to appear in Magistrate’s Court.
With the introduction of the Red-Light Camera Enforcement Technology, the system’s automated camera provides 24-hour surveillance for the photo detection and video recording of vehicles entering and continuing through an intersection with a red traffic light. Once a vehicle is captured in violation of that red traffic light, the data is immediately and electronically transmitted to the Traffic Enforcement Centre (TEC).
An electronic case file is created by the TEC for the red-light violation. The highly trained staff at TEC will engage in the analysis of photographs and video recordings of the red-light violation. The first step of the analysis involves a preliminary review by a Processing Officer who will confirm the vehicle’s registered information.
The next step involves analysis by an Inspection Officer, who is a trained Police Officer, Traffic Warden or Licensing Officer and, has been certified to be an Inspection Officer by the Commissioner of Police. The Inspection Officer reviews the footage of the red-light traffic violation to determine if a breach did occur.
Once a breach of the red-light traffic signal is certified by the Inspection Officer, a citation notice is generated and mailed to the registered owner of the motor vehicle via TTPOST courier. The citation notice will contain the following information:
- The registered owner of the vehicle;
- The registration number plate of the vehicle;
- The make and colour of the vehicle;
- The online link to the photograph and video recording of the violation;
- Date when the photograph and recording was captured; and
- The time and location at which the photograph was captured.
To allow for a citation notice to be delivered to the registered owner of the motor vehicle, the Ministry of Works & Transport has ensured that all driving permit records and vehicular information have been updated and placed on an electronic database. The information of the vehicle involved in the red-light traffic violation will be retrieved and confirmed from that electronic database. When reviewing the photograph and video recordings of red-light violations, Inspection Officers can access the vehicle’s details from the electronic database to identify the registered owner to whom the citation notice is to be sent.
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Paying a Citation Notice for Red-Light Camera Violations
Once the citation notice has been delivered, registered owners have 45 days to pay the fine of $1000.00. Payments can be made at TTPOST’s authorised locations nationwide by cash, debit card and soon, credit card. Generally, you will need the citation notice number, or the vehicle’s registration number to make the payment. The payment must be made in full and in one transaction. No installments or part-payments will be accepted.
Note: No demerit points will be applied for these violations
If the escalated fine remains unpaid after 14 days, the Licensing Authority may impose the following sanctions:
(1) Suspension of the driving permit, (if applicable);
(2) Ceasing all transactions in relation to the motor vehicle which was involved in the commission of the violation;
(3) Ceasing all transactions with the owner of the motor vehicle, until the $1500.00 fine is fully paid.
Important Notice to Registered Owners of Motor Vehicles
Since the registered owners of the vehicle are responsible for the payment for the fine associated with red-light breaches, they should pay particular attention and exercise informed judgement when permitting or lending their vehicles to third parties.
Contesting the Citation Notice for Red-Light Violations
Just like the fixed penalty system, the owner of the motor vehicle has an opportunity to file a notice to contest via the following link https://contest.ttlawcourts.org.
There are only two (2) instances where persons are permitted to contest the citation notice –
The motor vehicle was stolen, or
The recipient of the Citation Notice is no longer the owner of the vehicle having duly registered a change of possession of the motor vehicle.
Once the notice to contest is filed within thirty (30) days of the citation notice, the information is electronically transmitted via U-TURN System to the Traffic Enforcement Centre and the process will be initiated for a court hearing at the Magistrates’ Court.
The Traffic Enforcement Centre will transmit to the Court an electronic case file, which shall include a copy of the citation notice, the record of the notice to contest, a photograph and video recording of the vehicle in breach and proof of delivery of the citation notice. Once the Court completes its process of determining the matter, the result will be transmitted to the Traffic Enforcement Centre via the U-Turn system so that the records of the registered owner can be updated at the Licensing Division.
A Guide to Understanding the Red Light Camera Enforcement System
MVRT Act Chapter 48.50
MVRT Act No. 9 of 2017
Vehicle Testing Stations
MOWT Divisions & Units
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- Coastal Protection Unit
- Construction Division
- Drainage Division
- Environmental, Health and Safety Unit (EHSU)
- Highway Division
- Mechanical Division
- Maintenance Division
- Maritime Services Division
- Priority Bus Route Unit
- Programme for Upgrading Roads Efficiency (PURE)
- The Traffic Management Branch (TMB)
- Traffic Warden Division
- Transport Division
- The Unemployment Relief Programme
- Central Planning Unit
Driving Permit Applications & Renewals
- Applying for a Provisional Driving Permit
- Renewing your Driving Permit
- Applicant Categories
- Renewal of Driver's Permits for Ten (10) years.
Replacement of Lost Permit
- Issuance or Replacement Driver's Permit (Duplicate)
- Applicable fees if you’re applying for a replacement of an expired driving permit
Maxi Taxi Regulations
- Applying for a Taxi-Driver's Badge & Taxi Driver's License
- Associated fees for applying for a Taxi Driving Permit
- Renewing of a Taxi Driver's Badge & Driving Permit
- Fees for Replacement of a Taxi Badge & Taxi Driving Permit
- Replacing your Taxi Driver's Badge & Driving Permit
- Ownership of Maxi Taxi Services
- Maxi Taxi Operator's Permit
Class 4 & 5 Applications (Heavy T)
The applicant must be at least twenty-one (21) years of age and the holder of a driving permit of the next lower class of motor vehicle.
Registration of Motor Vehicles
- Fees for Registration of a Motor Vehicle
- Registration of Foreign - Used vehicle
- Change of Registration of a Motor Vehicle
- Amendments to the Motor Vehicle Register Notification of Change of the following particulars
Transfer of Ownership
- Transfer of Ownership of a Motor Vehicle other than by Death
- Transfer of Ownership of Motor Vehicle on Death of Registered Owner
- Colour or Engine Number
- Chassis Number
- Requirements for Visitors to drive in Trinidad &Tobago
- Requirements for Dealer's License First Issue
- Renewal of Dealer's License
- Application for Replacement of a Dealer's License
- Application for Rental Operation
Notice for Drivers
For More information on the Amendments to the Motor Vehicles and Road Traffic Act, please visit the Ministry’s website – www.mowt.gov.tt and click on MVRT Act Chapter 48 50 tab.
Remember, to avoid a traffic ticket and demerit points simply obey the road traffic laws. Do not act contrary to the law outlined in the Motor Vehicles and Road Traffic Act Chapter 48:50.
The Transport Division of the Ministry of Works and Transport wishes to advise all permit holders /motorists to ensure that their vehicles are in compliance with the TARE Weight and Maximum Gross TARE Weight in keeping with the law.