DRIVERS in a major US city should expect a new road law to come into effect in the near future.
The District Department of Transportation in Washington DC has confirmed that new fines for driving or parking in bus-only lanes and blocked bus stops will soon be introduced.
The directive was scheduled to take effect Monday but has now been postponed while the DOT works out further logistical measures.
DDOT told DCist that they are working to “complete operations with WMATA.”
No further information was provided on the decision to roll back the policy.
The new law is part of the Clear Lanes Project, a joint initiative between Metro and DDOT.
Advanced camera technology will be used to identify vehicles illegally parked or towed in bus lanes.
The cameras mounted on buses are the first of their kind to be introduced in the country.
The fines are intended to deter drivers from obstructing traffic and are aimed at reducing journey times and increasing bus safety.
Until the policy is implemented, drivers who violate the law will receive warnings in the mail.
Violators will not be held responsible until the fines come into force.
Once the policy goes into effect, motorists will face fines of up to $200.
Transportation experts believe the project will improve service for more than half of Metrobus riders.
However, some leaders have questioned the impact of the policy on commuters.
Lindiwe Rennert, a researcher at the Metropolitan Housing and Communities Policy Center, questioned whether the harsh $200 fine was fair.
She also noted that Washington Metropolitan Area Transit reports that 80 percent of riders on bus lane-supported routes are people of color and over half are low income.
DDOT will make a public announcement once it has decided on a new enforcement date.