When the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) announced the installation of new Gatso Speed CCTV system, we expected the NLEX to be able to effectively catch more violations of their prescribed speed limits, resulting in more fines and penalties for erring drivers.

Well, it seems the opposite has happened, and in a good way.

According to the NLEX, the announcement of the new speed cameras has effectively deterred drivers from going over the limit. In fact, NLEX Corporation says that the presence of the cameras has reduced the incidents of speed violations by up to half, based on the number of violators apprehended.

Glenn Campos, NLEX Corporation's Vice President for Technology, says that the use of automated speed CCTV cameras is part of their drive to use modern technology to catch those driving over the limit.

Prior to the installation of the camera systems, NLEX traffic enforcers used LIDAR speed guns to check how fast vehicles were driving. The manual way is cumbersome and only tracks one vehicle at a time. The new system negates that, and can track up to 32 vehicles simultaneously, identifies the plates of erring vehicles and sends the data to apprehending officers at the exit.

The NLEX has three of the new fixed units but also has two of the portable LIDAR units.

Campos noted that apps like Waze have also warned motorists of speed limits and speed cameras; undoubtedly helping with compliance with the rules.

“Our tollways are not racetracks, we urge motorists to follow and respect speed limits,” said Engr. Bert Suansing, Toll Regulatory Board Spokesman. “It’s either they get apprehended for speeding or risk their lives due to unwanted road accidents.”

The NLEX also warned that lane grabbing or lane hogging, the act of slow vehicles staying on the leftmost lane (passing/overtaking lane) by motorists will be actively apprehended.