As of yesterday all vehicle owners using Mexico’s federal highways must have insurance or face fines of 2,000 to 4,000 pesos (US $100 to $210).
January 1 marked the entry of the last phase of the staggered implementation of updates to a federal law approved in 2013.
The law established that drivers must have at a minimum third-party liability insurance.
The first phase, implemented in September 2014, required owners of vehicles manufactured in 2011 or later and with a value of 186,000 pesos to take out insurance. The following year, the requirement expanded to include vehicles manufactured since 2008. In 2016, the date became 2005, and last year it fell back to the year 2000.
Now the requirement applies to all vehicles.
Drivers must be insured for at least 100,000 pesos (US $5,100) for personal injury and at least 50,000 pesos ($2,560) for property damage.
A spokesman for the insurance company Quálitas said premiums for the minimum coverage start at 700 pesos (US $35) a year.
The law is intended to protect the victims of traffic accidents which, according to the Association of Mexican Insurance Companies (AMIS), are the second cause of death among people aged five to 34.
On average, there are 1,000 traffic accidents in Mexico every day, causing 44 deaths and injuring 369 people.
The Mexican insurance industry cites the example of a 28-year-old man who has required medical attention for 11 years after being involved in a traffic accident. His medical bills are 3.1 million pesos a year, meaning that his insurance company has paid out 34.7 million pesos.
Source: Excélsior (sp)