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Traffic police officers need to be retrained


Tue, Mar 03, 2015

EDITOR: As a motorist, I’m very concerned about the traffic situation in St Vincent and the Grenadines. The department is headed by Mr Kenneth John, who served as a traffic officer for a very long time before heading the department.

With the level of experience he has, Mr John should be able to manage this department more diligently. Sometimes I wonder if he experiences problems from the officers that are assigned to him.{{more}} I will agree that regulating traffic in St Vincent and the Grenadines is a challenge, based on the road conditions, poorly placed signs and unruly drivers, particularly omnibus drivers.

How should we deal with these problems that prevent us from getting it right? First, there must be a revisiting of persons who are driving public service vehicles; police officers who are assigned to the traffic department must take their responsibilities seriously and put measures in place to penalize any drivers that break the law on a regular basis.

Vincentians complain about the manner in which the traffic officers carry out their duties. Madam Editor, drivers are frequently complaining about the attitude and the manner in which police execute their duties. Quite a lot is left to be desired.

Could you imagine at the ET Joshua Airport, the police officer who is stationed there spends his/her time upstairs watching TV. One female officer sat at the dispatcher’s desk for over two hours.

When I spoke about the matter, she told me to mind my own business because she is not employed by me.

I was also informed by another traffic officer, who is sometimes stationed at the airport, that the director of Airports Mrs Best doesn’t show them enough support and that’s why they don’t put in the extra effort.

There is a section 355 in the traffic rules and regulations which was received in 2009. How many of these traffic officers read and understand this section? Some of the police officers are in need of retraining. I don’t know if changing the personnel might help, but it’s worth a try. Some of these traffic officers are in need of a defensive driving course.

The traffic department is in need of dedicated officers like Corporal Jones. His dedication exceeds expectations. He is skilled and shows a level of profession that reflects the person he is. Could you imagine Station Sergeant Nero, who is second in charge, doesn’t even know persons (politicians) driving vehicles without insurance and license.

Is that a reflection of the seriousness of the department? I am hoping that the traffic department gets it right. Vincentians demand proper professional service when being dealt with by traffic officers.
Kingsley DeFreitas

Footnote:Madam Editor, as I sit and write this letter there is no police officer stationed at the airport, neither a security customs officer. I am really disappointed