Motorists breaking traffic laws in Seychelles will face heftier fines from February 1, a top official said on Tuesday.
Offences that used to cost SCR 200 ($15), such as parking on the pavement, will now cost SCR 500 ($37.5) and offences like using a mobile phone while driving, not wearing a seatbelt and playing loud music will result in a SCR 1,000 ($75) fine.
The senior legal officer in the Department of Transport, Kenny Elizabeth, told SNA that the amendments to the fines were made to serve as a deterrent for motorists.
Figures given by the police show that the traffic section sends around 40 cases to court per week out of the 150 it records weekly.
“Although these numbers cover everything from not wearing a seatbelt to using a mobile phone, these figures are just too high,” said Superintendent Antoine Desnousse, the head of visible policing in the Seychelles Police Force.
A new measure to tackle traffic offences in Seychelles will be introduced, namely the introduction of clamping and towing vehicles that are illegally parked, which was approved by the cabinet of ministers last week.
 “Once this law is in place, it will be in line with the existing parking offences,” explained Desnousse.
He added that when all the new rules are in place, it will make motorists realise that they should be more careful as to where they park.
The authorities still need to confirm where the vehicles will be placed once they have been towed, as well as when illegally parked vehicles will be clamped.
Since the 1990s, Seychelles, an archipelago in the western Indian Ocean, with a population of 99,000 inhabitants, has built housing estates around the country to cater to housing demand.
According to the Department of Transport, there are many complaints from these estates about individuals parking their vehicles there and playing loud music. With the amendments now in effect, such practices will incur a SCR1000 fine for playing loud music anywhere on public roads.
In view of the lack of parking in the town area, the principal secretary for transport, Patrick Andre, explained that there are plans to build multi-storied parking facilities on the outskirts of the country’s capital Victoria.
“This will limit the need for parking in town as we are also planning to introduce a shuttle service for those who will use the facilities in future,” said Andre.
Meanwhile, a point demerit system that penalises drivers for offences committed on the roads is being finalised. Drivers’ licenses will be revoked once they reach a certain number of points. 

Source: Seychelles News Agency