In an effort to modernize and reform the transportation sector, The Ministry of Transport and Works, in consultation with the relevant stakeholder Departments of Government, namely the Inland Revenue Department and the Ministry of National Security, has identified a number of deficiencies that exist with the current license plate system. Minister of Transport and Works, the Hon. Mike Henry, during Diplomatic Week held at the Courtleigh Hotel in Kingston recently, outlined some of the changes that will take place.  Among the critical issues that were identified to be addressed under the new system are the incidents of vehicle theft, duplicate license plates, counterfeit plates and trafficking stolen vehicles, as vehicles are not easily identifiable by law enforcement officers.

He explained that the Government of Jamaica, in recognizing the current problems associated with the existing license plate system, is now seeking to transform the current system by addressing all the loopholes and crafting a regime which will benefit the country as a whole.  It is estimated that during the process, a total of 554,000 registered motor vehicles, including privately registered motor vehicles, will be affected.

Minister Henry added that the system is intended to offer added protection to motorists as well as increasing the security within the traffic environment. “There is also an associated plan to implement an e-surveillance system in Jamaica (whereby cameras will be used to monitor traffic movements at selected locations.  This system will transcend the erection of Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) Cameras, and will include the use of a License Plate Recognition System (LPRS). This technology will be calibrated in accordance with the newly configured license Plate.  These measures are very critical and will not only be beneficial to enhancing the traffic environment, but will also ideally aid in traffic law enforcement.”

Activities in this area have already started to materialize, as CCTV cameras have been erected at various locations throughout the Corporate Area and in areas of May Pen.