INDEPENDENT NEWS

Plan For New Police Cars

Published: Wed 9 Aug 2000 04:53 PM
Minister of Police Hon. George Hawkins said up to $20 million will likely be spent on up to 660 police vehicles.
The amount is subject to Cabinet approval.
The proposed new vehicles will be on top of 180 Highway Patrol vehicles announced as part of this year's Budget.
George Hawkins said: "Almost half of the Police vehicle fleet, 43%, have odometer readings exceeding 100,000 kilometres.
"That’s around 2200 vehicles. And that is unacceptable," George Hawkins said.
"There are police cars in the fleet that have gone around the clock several times.
"That is appalling. Police vehicles are used in urgent emergency situations. It is not right that Police officers steer an old car, a museum piece with hundreds of miles on the clock, to an emergency," George Hawkins said.
The Police Executive advises that vehicles be replaced at 100,000 kilometres or after three years.
"The past National government ran down the Police vehicle fleet. They poured money into INCIS. It was a pipe dream. National clawed away at resources that should have been spent on providing Police with the equipment necessary for them to do their job," George Hawkins said.
During the height of INCIS [1996/97 and 1997/98 financial years] just $5 million and $5.8 million respectively was spent on Police vehicles.
"As Minister of Police I have visited Police districts all over the country. Police have been crying out for new vehicles. Many cars are dented and have soft suspension. Their motors are tired. It takes a special talent to keep these vehicles on the road.
"I am determined to provide Police with the vehicles they need to operate safely and effectively," George Hawkins said.

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