What every citizen should know about Photomultas
The Ministry of Public Security (SSP) put into operation the survey of infractions through a photographic detection system in different parts of Mexico City in 2015. The infractions raised with the image detection system, called Fotomultas, mainly seek create a road culture that protects the safety of motorists, pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists.
Another reason for the implementation of the program is to reduce the number of fatal accidents due to speeding. From the operation of the survey of photographic infractions, death and bodily injuries due to road mishaps have decreased considerably according to figures from the Mexican Red Cross.
In the year in which the photomultes system began to operate in the country’s capital, there were 739 fatalities; In the following cycle, the figures had been reduced to 626 cases and in 2017 only 550 fatal accidents were estimated. Similarly, vehicle collisions went from 4,122 to 3,684 mishaps.
Like any other offense, citizens can check if their vehicle has a photographic fine on the SSP-CDMX website. However, the company that currently controls the issuance of these infractions has not been able to resolve the time it takes to register the road fault. This was not very encouraging for thousands of drivers who discovered many months later that they had infractions in the system and that they had to clear them to be able to carry out mandatory vehicle procedures in Mexico City.
Currently, the system can only infringe cars with plates from the CDMX and the State of Mexico.
The avenues with the most surveillance of the program are:
- Bicentennial Circuit.
- Miguel Alemán Viaduct.
- Tlalpan road
- Constituents Avenue.
- San Joaquin River.
- Lázaro Cárdenas Central Axis.
- Peripheral ring.
How is a photo violation raised?
When a vehicle is in violation of the traffic regulations such as invading the pedestrian or cyclist crossing, running a traffic light, violating the turn signals or exceeding the allowed speed, the system detects and captures an image of the offending vehicle that will be sent to the computation of the concessioned company, to later be sent to the SSP-CDMX under the following procedure:
- The camera detects the license plate and the exact time the vehicles pass by.
- Another system similarly captures the data from the car and measures the time it takes the car to travel the section to calculate the average speed.
Both devices have a radar to measure in real time the speed with respect to a current limit. This device is known as a kinemometer. In the same way, the measurement is made through an infrared laser that is reflected in the moving vehicle and allows to give certainty to the radar reading.
- The data collected by the system is sent to the SSP-CDMX, where it is reviewed, analyzed and validated with an electronic signature. The agency will be in charge of verifying and determining whether the image clearly reveals the violation of the traffic code and will subsequently issue the violation ticket.
- Once the fine was generated, the driver you will receive the sanction by email within approximately 10 days. The document generated contains photographs, time and day, location, as well as a description of the offense and the amount to be paid.
- After having received the infraction, the citizen must go to the offices of the Treasury, centers authorized for that purpose, including electronic means of payment or at the bank of their choice. Or if a transit agent has portable electronic equipment (Hand held), payment can be made at the time.
The sanctioned driver has the right to be deducted 50 percent of the amount if the payment is made within a period of 30 calendar days from the date of issuance of the ticket.
What are the costs of the most common absences?
The financial sanction may vary depending on the reason for the offense, as well as the entity in which the offense is committed. In Mexico City, the most recurring fines are:
|Detectable behavior||Penalty fee||Minus points on the license|
|Circular in counter flow||$ 3,019 and referral to the corral||6 points|
|Drive in the opposite direction||$ 377.45||3 points|
|Invade waiting area for bicycles and motorcycles||$ 699.50- $ 1,399||3 points|
|Invasion of the pedestrian crossing||$ 1,509- $ 2,264||3 points|
|Failure to respect the red traffic light||$ 754.90||3 points|
|Turn prohibited in “U”||$ 1,509- $ 2,264||3 points|
|Invade confined or exclusive lanes for bike lanes or Metrobús||$ 3,019 and referral to the corral||6 points|
|Use of distractors such as cell phones or tablets||$ 377.45||3 points|
|Not wearing a seat belt||$ 377.45- $ 497.50||1 point|
Infringement system in other states
According to data from the National Public Security System, so far this year, there have been 5 thousand 431 fatalities nationwide from a car accident and 12 thousand 810 from bodily injuries derived from a road accident. That is, 32 people die daily due to an accident related to vehicle accidents.
The states that registered the most deaths from road accidents until May 2018 They are: Mexico City with 229, Jalisco with 397, State of Mexico with 286, Michoacán with 287, Nuevo León with 351, Puebla with 385, Sinaloa with 286 and Sonora with 239 deaths.
In the case of the State of Mexico, the photography infraction system managed to reduce from 857 cases to 544 deaths per year. However, after the suspension of the program it increased by 30%.
In Puebla, the photo-fines program did not reduce the number of fatalities, but it did reduce the number of personal injuries resulting from a car accident.
However, the issue has been highly controversial in various entities of the country, due to the fact that the possibility that said infractions violate the right to defend oneself verbally against an infraction and free movement of motorists has been put on the table.
In entities such as Mexico City, Puebla, Coahuila, and Chihuahua, the issue has caused the sanctioned citizens to file amparos based on article 16 of the Political Constitution of the United Mexican States, which establishes that the authority must substantiate and manifest in writing the legal cause of the procedure. That is to say, because the photo-infringement system does not give immediate notice to the defendant, the sanction procedure could be argued unconstitutional since the person involved could not defend himself against said offense.
In the capital of the country, the ministers of the Supreme Court of Justice resolved this controversy with the assumption that said system aims to fine flagrant acts, to avoid traffic accidents, so the authority is empowered to proceed in such a way. Citizens may file a clarification of the offense later.
Photo fines could disappear in CDMX
After the electoral contest on July 2, 2018, the virtual winner of the CDMX head of government signed an agreement by which she agrees to cancel the photo fines as of January 2019.
One of the main proposals of the candidate to the head of the government of the capital was to cancel the photomultas. The main argument to overturn this measure is that the operation of private companies have benefited from the payment of these sanctions. So the campaign promise focuses on improving the road culture of the capital’s drivers and taking other measures that have not been made known by the virtual winner.
To increase road safety education for citizens, the candidate proposes:
- Watch speed limits for motorists.
- Give priority to the pedestrian to improve the mobility of the city.
However, the agency in charge of managing infractions in the city, Secretary of Public Safety, estimated that in 2016 alone, vehicle accidents with fatal consequences have decreased 23%, due to speed regulations and infractions for violating this provision.