Are speed fines in private estates legal?
Bad news for those living in private estates! Private estates are allowed to come up with their own traffic rules and can fine you how ever much they please.
JOHANNESBURG – Bad news for those living in private estates - they are allowed to come up with their own traffic rules.
Speaking on the Azania Mosaka Show, Howard Dembovsky, Founder of Justice Project SA, confirmed that if a place is fenced and there’s a private road then estates are allowed to do what they wish to do within that estate.
A private road is where public access is restricted and can only be authorised by inhabitants of the complex. Therefore, all Fast and Furious behaviour on these roads can be regulated by the Home Owners Association (HOA).
This means that the speeding fines may be issued because of the contractual relationship that the owner is bound by when buying in the estate.
“They can make up their own rules and they can make up their own fines and they can fine to their heart’s content.” Dembovsky said.
However, Dembovsky noted that private estates may not use any speed measuring equipment regardless of its quality.
Calling into the show to share her experience, Lee-Ann Sykes said that she was fined R2,000 in a private estate while visiting her sister for driving 51km/h in a 40km/h speed limit zone. Sykes disputed the fine as unfair and needed to find out if this was legal.
Ultimately, the owner is liable to pay for his/her visitors’ speeding fines because he/she gave them consent to enter the private estate.
Asked if the caller could dispute the R2,000 fine, Dembovsky said no, because she admitted guilt.
“Well, there would have been… The second you admit guilt, you say goodbye to any legal challenges you may wish to bring.”
For more on this issue, listen to the audio below: