Vice Chairman of the National Road Safety Council (NRSC), Dr. Lucien Jones, has commended the island’s police officers attached to the Traffic Division for their work in helping to reduce road fatalities across the island.
Dr. Jones was addressing the Jamaica Constabulary Force All-Island Traffic Conference 2014 at the Elletson Road Sports Complex in Kingston, recently at a conference held under the theme: ‘Towards Effective and Sustainable Traffic Management and Enforcement’.
Addressing the more than 30 police officers, Dr. Jones said that in March this year, road fatalities stood at 83, or 20 percent above the corresponding period for 2013. And since then, through the efforts of the police, the number of deaths on the road has declined.
“A lot of good work is being done by the Traffic Department and I thank you for the hard work you have done to bring down the road fatalities. And, thank you for being vigilant on our roads. I commend you for your hard work,” he said.
Dr. Jones stated that road crashes were one of the leading causes for the death of persons below the age of 40 worldwide; and, the police, by carrying out their duties, were part of a global movement dedicated to reducing the deaths, annually.
“What you are doing here is not just ticketing persons; you are saving lives and contributing to a global movement to ensure that there are less fatalities on our roads,” he pointed out.
In the meantime, Duane Ellis, General Manager of the Jamaica Automobile Association (JAA), who also addressed the seminar, implored members of the police force to demonstrate good customer service when interacting with the public.
“People don’t like to feel bullied. I want you to stop and think about your customer service and how to create happy customers. How many of you approach members of the public with a smile? You are trying to do your jobs; but, can you do it without being bullies?”
And while some police officers in attendance emphasized that the culture of the society needed to be changed, Mr. Ellis added that a change in approach by some police officers would help the police build a better relationship with members of the public.
Meanwhile, Senior Superintendent of Police Calvin Allen encouraged members of the force to be professional while carrying out their duties.
“Even with limited resources, I call on you to use your initiatives in helping to reduce fatalities on our roads. I admonish you to carry out your duties diligently while remembering how to interact with the public. Remember, the good things we do are often not mentioned. It’s the one bad thing that can wipe away all the good that we have done,” the Senior Superintendent said.
Other speakers at the conference were Ludlow Powell, Director of the Island Traffic Authority; Outeou Gordon, Traffic Ticket Administrator; Kenute Hare, Director of the Road Safety Unit; and Ralston Smith, Regional Manager of the Transport Authority.