For my work weekdays I’m usually on the road between 6 am and 6.30 am depending on which side of the bed i wake up on lol. The first part of my journey starts with a tiny little 7 seater mini van aptly named ‘Maruti’. They transport passengers in and out of the estate taking them to the relevant bus stops.
Now, while i appreciate how much it is a blessing to have these maruti’s in the estate, one can spend about 20-30 min on a clear 3km stretch of road. This is because, these tiny little maruti, will stop at every stage for at least five minutes. See why i have to wake up early?
Next part of my journey, Thika Road, yep, the dreaded Thika Road. Surprisingly, these past few weeks there’s barely been any traffic snarl ups. But since schools opened, expect to spend at least 30 minutes between Roasters and Survey.
The last part of my journey is commuting from town to Milimani. I used to use the KBS and City Hoppa buses, pay Ksh.30 and end up spending another 30 min trying to escape the traffic at the CBD. So, i decided to start walking, which takes about 10-15 minutes. By the time I’m at work, I’ve had a bit of a work out (it’s advisable to carry deodorant lol), enjoyed the cool, fresh morning air and escaped a traffic headache.
Looking back, i keep asking myself why i even bother getting up in the morning, but then i think of the size of my bank account and my spending habits lol. So there you have it, a typical morning commute for me, and i get to repeat the whole process in the evening *cringe*
Now, onto other serious matters…
With the new traffic provisions comes a whole slew of traffic offenses. Below is a list of common traffic offenses and the fines/cash bail terms as per the Traffic Act.
-> Section 22A – Boarding a matatu as an excess passenger. Fine- Ksh.500
->Section 90 (2) (c) – Willful obstruction of free flow of motor vehicle (crossing the road at undesignated areas). Fine – Ksh.500
->Section 66 (1) (x) – Boarding or alighting vehicles at undesignated areas. Fine- Ksh. 5,000
->Section 44 (1) (2) -Driving under the influence (Alcoblow). Fine ranges from 30,000-40,000 depending on the magistrate. For PSV drivers the fine is between Ksh. 60,000 and above.
->Section 53 (1) Obstruction by car. Fine – Ksh 15,000
-> Section 52 (1) (a) – Failing to obey direction given either verbally or by signal by traffic officer – Fine Ksh 10,000
-> Section 55 (1) Unmaintained motor vehicles e.g cracked windshield, worn out tires e.t.c. Fine Ksh.10,000-Ksh.20,000
-> Section 64 (d) -Picking and setting down passengers at places not authorized as bus stop. Fine Ksh 5,000
-> Section 41 A (b) (1) – Failing to install digital speed governor. Fine Ksh 30,000- Ksh 40,000
-> Section 73 (4) – Dangerous Overtaking. Fine – Ksh 10,000
Section 25 (A) – Carrying a pillion passenger without helmet or reflective gear. Fine Ksh 5,000
Section 103 (B) (1) – Riding a motorcycle without reflective gear or helmet. Fine Ksh 10,000 for helmet and Ksh 10,000 for reflective jacket.
TIPS FOR COURT
-> When your name is called out in court always respond out loud. I was saw a guy spend another night in jail when the Magistrate called out his name and he failed to respond.
-> In relation to the above, be alert!
-> When asked if you have any mitigation/malilio, don’t relate the events of what led to your arrest instead state facts that the magistrate may use to consider to lower your fine or dismiss the case altogether e.g a pregnant wife, a large family e.t.c
-> If caught on an alcoblow charge, i don’t care how you do it, but make sure when you appear in court you are still not drunk, the magistrate will know!!!!!
-> For those who have friends/relatives appearing in court to answer a charge, and you are paying their fine, first, find out the amount fined, then go to the traffic registry where they will fill a court fine slip fo you. Next go to the bank (located within the premises) with said fine slip where you will pay the fine. The bank will give you a pink bank slip which you will have to make three copies of, usually outside the court premises. With the copies, original bank slip and the court fine slip, go back to the traffic registry and hand the documents over to the clerks there. You will then wait a while for a receipt, which you will use to get out your friend/relative, by giving it to one of the policemen attached to the traffic court.
It is quite a long process, so its much easier to use the money transfer M-pesa (there are posters at the registry detailing the process) but the downfall is that most of the time it is usually not operational, but when operational, the process is much faster.
-> For those fined an amount of Ksh. 500 and below, , it’s adviseable to have the cash ready in court or with one of your friends/relatives. The registry will take the cash, and process the rceipt without the fuss of going to the bank..
Hope this will be of help.
Until the next update…
PS. DO NOTE THAT THESE FINES ARE NOT FIXED, THEY ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGES.
Driving in Nairobi – Madness on Wheels
From a foreigners perspective driving in Nairobi is unfalsified madness. Cars throwing themselves across lanes, endless ques with kids selling fresh bananas up and down the lines, polluting big lorrys blocking all other traffic for ages …
Try grabbing the Ngong road at the end of business hours towards Rongai. Its a chaos of honking horns, matutas, angry taxidrivers yelling and people trying to jump the stand-still lines by driving the ditches. I wouldnt miss the madness for the world, but in terms of pollution, efficiency and making a city function in a reasonably practical way – the infrastructure of Nairobi is disastrous. Now why is that relevant to the new laws?
1. The new regulations puts fewer people in each cars and slows each one down too -> Even more traffic jams, less efficiency
2. Confiscating or putting cars in garages (for having tinted windows) -> Damages the economy, when the economy needs the opposite
3. Restricting Matutas and hanging off busses -> It will be harder and slower to get to work – and put more cars in the endless quees
I LOVE Nairobi for all its vibrancy, madness and chaos, but when the the politicians make laws to try and combat terrorism that first and foremost damage everyday life of ordinary Kenyans – someone has to pull the handbreak on them! Even if they confiscate every car with tinted windows and put up roadblocks on every corner, it wont affect the criminals as they will obviously just change their means. But it will make an allready broken traffic system in Nairobi even less efficient, thus making it harder for businesses to prosper and create much needed jobs.
- 13Recently, the Judiciary collaborating with the Police launched new guidelines for traffic offenders. This was due to uproars caused by Kenyan motorists on corruption, long court processes, heavy fines and convoluted ways of paying fines, among others. So what does this mean for Kenyan motorists? Well, for one, if charged…
- 9The Karen Blixen House. The original farm house of Karen Blixen near Nairobi Being Danish i ventured to the home of Karen Blixen with high expectations of the legendary accomplishments of my fellow Dane. The well preserved farmhouse is located on the outskirts of Nairobi, Kenya in the high-end area…