(QCOSTARICA) Between 5:00 am Sunday and 5:00 am Monday, 246 drivers were sanctioned for disrespecting the sanitary vehicle restrictions.
The Policia the Transito (Traffic Police) report that between 5:00 am and 7:00 pm Sunday, when only even-numbered plates could circulate, 125 drivers were fined for disrespecting the measure and 557 traffic tickets were issued for other reasons, among them, 2 drunk drivers were detected.
Meanwhile, between 7:00 pm Sunday and 5:00 am Monday, 121 drivers were sanctioned for being on the road, the period when only exempted vehicles are permitted to circulate and 633 tickets were made for other breaches, among them, 13 drunk drivers.
The outages, with data from the Ministry of Public Works and Transport (MOPT), are made at 5:00 a.m. and at 5:00 p.m. for control matters of the Traffic Police.
The daytime and nighttime vehicular restrictions on all the roads in the country have been in place since March 24.
The times have varied, from severe restrictions during Semana Santa to more relaxed restrictions in place today, thousands of drivers (nearly 15,000) have been found circulating, incurring a sanction of ¢110,000 colones, six points on the license (which means driver ed on renewal) and seizure of the license plates and/or vehicle.
For some, the monetary penalty is seen as “part of doing business”, however, it may not be such an easy pass when license renewal time comes along or the long lines at the Cosevi (Costa Rica’s version of the department of motor vehicles) to retrieve license plates or the Ministry of Transport patios to get their car back. Which of course means the current and any outstanding fines must be paid up first.
The seizure of the license plate allows the driver to get the vehicle home, for example, but then will remain parked until the plates are retrieved, a couple of days at least. If the vehicle is towed, the driver will be ‘walking home’.
Not having the vehicle available also means the use of public transport (taxi, bus, Uber, etc) to get around. And besides the cost of these services, there is the exposure to possible contagion.
Just in case you need a reminder, the vehicular restrictions are as follows:
Daytime weekdays (Monday to Friday): 5:00 am to 10:00 pm according to the last digit of the license plate: 1 & 2 Mondays, 3 & 4 Tuesday, 5 & 6 Wednesdays, 7 & 8 Thursdays, and 9 & 0 Fridays.
Nighttime weekdays (Monday to Friday): 10:00 pm to 5:00 am, all vehicles are restriction unless in the exemption fully known by now, ie emergency vehicles, drivers working during the restricted hours (a proper note from an employer required), and say taking someone urgently to a hospital.
Daytime Saturday and Sunday: 5:00 am to 7:00 pm; Saturdays all even plates (0,2,4,6 & 8) are restricted, Sundays all odd plates (1,3,5,7 & 9) are restricted.
Nighttime Saturday and Sunday: 7:00 pm to 5L00 am, all vehicles are restriction unless exempt.
Additional restrictions: cantons and districts under “orange alert” are restricted from 5:00 am to 5:00 pm depending on the last digit of the license plate and ALL vehicles from 5:00 pm to 5:00 am.
The orange zone is dynamic, in that cantons and districts are added or deleted depending on the current contagion level. The Ministry of Health informs the public with a 24-hour notice of a pending restriction, which for now affects areas mainly in the northern zone.