Northern Ireland’s Transport Minister Danny Kennedy has announced that new measures to reduce the number of drivers illegally using bus lanes will come into force in June.
Legislation passed earlier this year permits the Department for Regional Development to deal with an infringement as a civil offence. The Department will use a network of six static cameras in Belfast and a mobile detection unit to monitor vehicles using bus lanes.
Currently, offences are dealt with by the PSNI and detection is classed as a criminal offence. Police powers will not be affected.
Danny Kennedy said: “While the vast majority of drivers obey the rules of the road, other drivers choose to illegally use bus lanes.
“The enforcement measures are aimed squarely at the drivers who illegally use bus lanes to jump queues and cut across traffic. These drivers can be a hazard to themselves, other road users, cyclists and pedestrians. They can also delay the progress of passengers opting to use our sustainable public transport service.”
Over the coming weeks CCTV enforcement cameras will be positioned at six points around Belfast. A mobile detection vehicle which can be deployed in Belfast and towns where bus lanes are used will also come into service.
Danny Kennedy continued: “Bus lanes were introduced to help manage traffic, reduce journey times and improve our public transport infrastructure.
“Supporting this I want to ensure that everyone who travels on our roads does so in a responsible and respectful way. I am confident that these new measures will help achieve this.”