Thursday, July 2, 2015

VicRoads officers routinely dodged speeding fines, demerit points: Ombudsman

Officers in VicRoads' transport safety division routinely granted colleagues exemptions from fines and demerit points for speeding, the Ombudsman has found in a new report.

And the report, by Victorian Ombudsman Deborah Glass, found that VicRoads officers often placed the public at risk by breaking speed limits in enforcement vehicles without using warning lights and sirens.

The report, tabled in the Victorian parliament on Wednesday, follows an investigation into a complaint referred to the Ombudsman by Victoria's anti-corruption commission, IBAC.

It was alleged that it was "normal practice" for VicRoads Transport Safety Services staff caught speeding in VicRoads vehicles to avoid a fine by claiming "unjustifiable exemptions".
"In effect, the allegation was that some VicRoads staff break the road rules with impunity," Ms Glass wrote.
Ms Glass said the investigation had revealed that some public officials were breaking the very regulations they were responsible for upholding and enforcing.

The Ombudsman has recommended disciplinary action be taken against two VicRoads staff members, and asked that other employees be better trained to prevent the practice continuing.

"People with the power to enforce the law and impose penalties on others must be held to the highest possible standards when it comes to their own conduct. It is a worrying state of affairs when those charged with enforcing the rules not only flout them, but have no qualm in doing so," Ms Glass said.

One enforcement officer interviewed by the Ombudsman as part of the report said that he routinely sped without lights or sirens "and that other officers also follow this practice".

This had highlighted a "culture of entitlement amongst VicRoads officers in Transport Safety Services to breach the legislation they are responsible for administering", the Ombudsman found. 10 Jun 2015

Another organisation with criminals in office.

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