Page 957 - Week 03 - Thursday, 10 March 2005

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(7) If a police officer is issued with a TIN (either on or off duty) does that affect their AFP-specific driving qualifications;

(8) Are police officers required to observe all traffic laws while (a) on and (b) off duty.

Mr Hargreaves: The answer to the member’s question is as follows:

(1) In the financial year 2003-2004 191 TINs were issued to police officers on duty, in the financial year 2004 2005 to date 83 TINs have been issued.

(2) TINs incurred by Australian Federal Police (AFP) vehicles are, in the first instance, forwarded to Traffic Representations who then identify the cost centre that the vehicle belongs to. The TIN is sent to the Coordinator of the cost centre requesting a report from the driver of the vehicle at the time. A covering report is then attached by that member’s Team Leader or Coordinator and returned to Traffic Representations. Traffic Representations attach records of any prior TINs incurred by the member involved and then forward the paperwork to the TIN Exemption Board (comprising the Deputy Chief Police Officer, Traffic Superintendent and Prosecution and Judicial Support Superintendent) who then make a decision whether an exemption pursuant to rule 305 of the Australian Road Rules is supported. If an exemption is not supported the infringement is put into the individuals name and they retain the right (as any member of the public does) to write to Traffic Representations requesting withdrawal of the notice. AFP members are not given any special consideration by virtue of their position, however if they meet the criteria for withdrawal of the notice Traffic Representations have the authority to withdraw the notice and proceed with a caution for the incident.

(3) No

(4) No

(5) Under the AFP National Guideline on Reporting Obligations members are required to provide a written report to their office manager if they are served with a traffic infringement notice that attracts a penalty involving the loss of six or more demerit points.

(6) No. Unless the TIN attracted a penalty involving the loss of six or more demerit points and AFP Professional Standards determines the offence to be an integrity issue that requires further action.

(7) Off duty - no unless the TIN results in their licence being suspended for non-payment of the TIN or too many demerit points accrued on their licence in which case the matter must be reported to AFP Professional Standards.

On duty-if the TIN Exemption Board decides not to grant an exemption based on the particulars of the incident they can direct the member be re-tested by a work place assessor who will re-assess their driving abilities and skills in the workplace.

(8) (a) Whilst on duty, only in special circumstances can an officer ignore the road rules if deemed necessary or appropriate by the member or police communications (in the case of a pursuit situation). In such circumstances officers are permitted to disobey road rules as long as they do so bearing in mind the requirements of Rule 305 of the Australian Road Rules.

(b) Yes, whilst off duty AFP members are required to observe all ACT road rules.

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