On June 21, 2011, the State Government published the New Traffic and Roadway Regulations in the Official Gazette, setting forth more severe sanctions for certain motorist practices as well as setting forth new obligations for vehicle owners.
The new ordinance specifically prohibits using cell phones and any other mobile communication instrument or system while driving, except in those instances where the conversation is via "hands free" devices.
Article 197, Section I sets a fine in the amount of 19 to 25 days’ minimum wage (approximately between 1,000 and 1,400 pesos) for those talking on a cellphone while driving. The highest fines are nearly 6,000 pesos, for other practices.
Overall, the regulation is characterized by the fact that prohibited practices will have much harsher sanctions. Thus, as of June 22, 2011 the fines for common violations such as parking in prohibited areas, and not respecting traffic signs or exceeding speed limits, will have a much higher fine than previously.
A group of uniformed policemen wearing a fluorescent vest and bearing a special identification tag will implement these new provisions, progressively and flexibly. These policemen will first give two warnings before finally imposing a fine.
The above procedure shall be carried out while transitioning between the earlier regulation and this current regulation. It will be in effect for approximately 180 days, allowing motorists the time to make the necessary adjustments to their vehicles, such as equipping them with seat belts for all passengers and installing car seats for infants.
There are also more detailed provisions as to tinted vehicle windows.
Source: Diario de Yucatan
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