BVI News

Police to increase fine for seatbelt, cell phone violations | Over 600 incidences so far this year

Head of the Traffic Division in the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force, Sergeant Augustus Bruce

While noting that there have already been more than 600 traffic offences committed for the year so far, police have said the ticketable fines for certain traffic violations will increase in the near future.

This is according to Head of the Traffic Division in the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force (RVIPF) Sergeant (Sgt) Augustus Bruce who said the aforementioned statistics only represent the two most committed traffic offences in the BVI.

“Just to give you an idea, we have over 300 seatbelt and over 300 cell phone offences recorded for the year so far,” said Officer Bruce in an interview with BVI News on Tuesday.

The top traffic cop said the ticket fine for driving without a seatbelt and driving while using a cell phone is $100 each but said the figure will increase because of the prevalence of the offences.

“Presently the offences are being reviewed as we speak. So, very soon, we should see a raise in penalty in relation to not only the seatbelt and cell phone but other offences,” the Sergeant added.

He did not specify what the increased fines will be.

Notably, however, it is said that police operators are allowed to not wear their seatbelts during the execution of their duties.

Sgt Bruce also addressed what has been described as a common misunderstanding by the public when they see uniformed officers committing the aforementioned traffic violations.

“People see the police officers not using a seat-belt or being on the cell phones — not only the police officers but prisons, fire officers and hospital. We are all emergency responders so there is an exemption for us under the law,” the Sergeant explained.

He, however, said the exemption only applies when emergency personnel are on official duty.

“We as police officers should not be using our cell phones or without seat-belt in our private vehicles,” he said

Copyright 2020 BVI News, Media Expressions Limited. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or distributed.

48 Comments

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  1. Devon says:

    So are these laws applicable to the police as well ? None of them I see except for the commissioner wear seat belts and are always on their phones whilst driving !
    How about laws ensuring children are secured safely in cars too ?

    Like 30
    Dislike 3
    • Smh says:

      Read the article again

      Like 11
      Dislike 2
    • Faith says:

      Did you read the entire article or just the headline? schupes

      Like 8
      Dislike 2
    • Rubber Duck says:

      But they won’t , ( dare not ) do anything about the illegal noise polluting scooters.

      Like 16
      Dislike 3
    • Not2Sure says:

      Never mind them – when are they going to start handing out fines to scooter drivers making noise and popping wheelies whilst driving down the divided highway?

      A policeman is more likely to hail his friends on scooters than pull them over or try to stop them.

      They are a menace. Do something about that if you want public support in relation to any clamp-down.

      Like 7
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      • Ginger says:

        So that when something happens to the scooter driver you all can cause the police officer to loose their jobs again or you all forget about that too.

        Like 5
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  2. Very good says:

    And you also need to crack down on the people who have their kids riding in the front seat, sitting on their parents laps in a moving car. Kids need to be in a car or booster seat. Just the other I say a child standing in the front of her mother car holding on to the dash board. If the car crash or have to make a sudden stop, the child will go right into the windshield.

    Like 41
    Dislike 1
    • Resident says:

      I am so guilty of this, I know it’s not safe for my child, but what happens when he knows how to release himself from the car seat and climb infront??

      Dislike 17
      • @Resident says:

        I can’t believe you even have to ask that question. You are the parent and your child should be disciplined and know there will be repercussions for doing that. That’s why children are so rude and disrespectful, because they do what they want and get away with it.

        Like 24
      • @Resident says:

        As a parent, you have to figure out a way to let your son know and understand that he is not allowed to do such. I had to let my 5 year old daughter know that mommy will give her pow pow if she touch the seatbelt buckle to climb over to the front seat. Most of you might think that is rough but, I would prefer to say I am going to give her pow pow than have her riding in the front seat. If something happens, let me take the impact, not her.

        Like 17
    • Okay then says:

      Triple on them

  3. East End says:

    Can the police department increase those fines or they have to be approved by the cabinet.

  4. Really... says:

    Does this mean that the police themselves have to wear a seatbelt, not use their phones while driving and also maybe have their vehicles leicenced, most police vehicles I see are still driving around with 2017 stickers in their windowss. Oh and what about all the scooters that drive around with no helmets, much more dangerious then a lack to seatbelt….

    Just saying, a lot of double standards here in the bvi….

    Like 15
  5. Local Boy says:

    Need to clamp down on everything they do in a car, eating , drinking wearing iPods ( how you can hear other people while wearing them eludes me) the scooters who act like they are in charge of the roads and drive like complete idiots, if its illegal to ride with out a helmet they are literally driving past police and clearly breaking the law , stop them fine them and if they don’t pay take their scooters away , People constantly going through the only traffic light when you have a green light meaning they went through a light that was red for at least 2 or 3 seconds should be hammered down on. Put camara’ s up on those lights and then fine them , someone is going to be killed soon

    Like 10
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  6. Uncle says:

    What about the parking violations? Is it only the venue at FLOW tickets are issued? For months I have reported illegal parking in a residential area and not one ticket has been issued. Talk about DOUBLE STANDARDS! The parked vehicles are on the main road. It makes it dangerous for motorist especially when motors are forced to drive on the wrong side of the road to get where they are going! If I ever have an accident on this road best believe I want it on record that the Royal VIPD totally ignored my concerns!!!

    Like 12
    • Not2Sure says:

      Also the parking by the Ferry dock – people double park all the time, leave their vehicle, blocking up traffic. Police there all the time, but they don’t care.

  7. oh boy says:

    CALLWOOD

    Like 2
    Dislike 1
  8. Ok says:

    Increase it higher for them island people

    Like 4
    Dislike 9
  9. BuzzBvi says:

    For VI peoples safety you really only need to stop the people on scooters driving like maniacs. The rest is small stuff.
    I would like to hear of 600 scooter riders stopped for serious offences instead of money making policies for easy police work.

    Like 18
    Dislike 1
    • @BviBuzz says:

      I understand what you are saying about the scooters but I do not agree with you when you say about the rest is small stuff.Playing Russian Roulette with your children lives not having them properly secure in a car seat is very disturbing to me. I put the seat belt on my dog when he is riding in the car.

  10. Miss says:

    Please crack down on the truck drivers carrying waste to the incinerator. The cargo area should be covered at all times. its only a matter of time before something flies off the truck and onto a vehicle or strikes a pedestrian.

    Like 19
  11. NB says:

    The police themselves are on cell phones whilst driving. Are they immune to the law?

    Like 7
    Dislike 4
  12. Jane says:

    Please advise how many fines have been issued to scooter riders too.

    Please start fining the taxi drivers for stopping to drop off/ collect outside of the Post Office in Town – it causes huge congestion and dangerous driving by other road users.

    Please put a traffic camera outside of Eureka / CCT to stop all the selfish drivers who cut back in the right lane rather than queue like the rest of us schmucks.

    This isnt rocket science guys. Sort it out and if you cant please can we have a new Commissioner who will do. This is an area where police can make money so why the heck arent they doing it???

    Like 15
    Dislike 1
  13. OMG!!?! says:

    Are these two offenses really the most serious that this police officer can come up with? I can add some that he left out. Speeding motor cycles, trucks transporting materials not covered or secured, highmacks being driven on roads causing damage. This top cop needs to look around and address the more serious offenses. These acts are also dangerous to the motoring public. Police officers need to get up off their a**es and do their jobs and not just nick pick.

    • Too True says:

      And what about those vehicles with only one head light or no brake lights? Not to mention the idiots that stop on the zebra crossings… or run the crossing when there is a pedestrian halfway across the road!

  14. Ben says:

    Police be on they phone having a whole conversation and no seat belt smh

    Like 3
    Dislike 2
  15. The Nation says:

    They need to give out tickets when people park next to LIME/FLOW and by the entrance at Joe’s Hill blocking up traffic. Increase the fees too, but ENFORCE THE LAW…every single day a set of cars park next to LIME like is a parking up…THEY NEED TO UP NO PARKING SIGNS there and elsewhere…
    And a set of them always making turns where it is illegal to make that turn…by Nagico and Cutlass Building…when are the CCT Cameras coming? People running red light all kinds of thing putting people life in danger

  16. Eagle eye says:

    Is this a new taxt collecting method.When I’m in my vehicle that’s my personal space like when i’m in my house.every experience driver knows people stand a better chance without the seat belt on.example,wearing a seat belt means you have to say in your seat strait up and take what ever is coming to you.with out it you can maneuver your body.make it worse if you run into the sea.seatbelts should not be mandatory.

    Like 4
    Dislike 3
  17. Leeman says:

    The top cop needs to establish a quota for the Police. A certain number of tickets per month, not just seat belt, but parking around a corner, noise pollution, parking on the wrong side of the road, driving on the right etc. Also what about under age drinking by young black and white kids?

  18. The Reaper says:

    The Expat police no good. They have good benefits. don’t have to pay work permit. I can go on…

    Like 4
    Dislike 2
  19. Someone he knows says:

    He feel big he up in rank in police force now. But what a man sew. So he shall reap.

    Like 2
    Dislike 1
  20. wize up says:

    just as we have this armed rapid response unit up and down: why cant there be a highway patrol; once road users know they can be intercepted at any given time highway safe will improve: seat belt & cell phones are only part of the issue; exceeding speed limits; driving while drunk; uninsured vehicles and the works: I recall when there was an active traffic department: now you can drive from one end this territory to the other any no police on our highways: we had less police but you always saw at least one officer on the public road

  21. LAC says:

    It’s says here that the fine for cellphone use is $100.00, but I got ticketed for cellphone use last year and had to pay $250.00. I wasn’t even on my cellphone, was just holding it in my hand on the arm rest.

  22. XANDER CAGE says:

    IN THE VI I FEEL THE SEAT BELT LAW SHOULD BE A SECONDARY ENFORCEMENT BUT PRIMARY UNDER CERTAIN AGES.

    INSTEAD OF FINDING NEW WAYS TO ANNOY CITIZENS AND DIG INTO THEIR POCKETS THEY SHOULD ENFORCE THE BAD PARKING FROM SOME DRIVERS IN ROAD TOWN, PLENTY TICKETABLE OFFENSES THERE AND REVENIEW.

  23. Grammar police says:

    There is no such word as “incidences”. Incidents is the plural of incident. Incidence is not a word commonly used and refers usually to medical

  24. Concerned says:

    Why do we wear seat belts?
    Isn’t it to protect us in case of an accident?
    What is likely to happen if a police car crashes? Do the officers have some other means to guard against serious injury? Just curious because it makes no sense to me.

  25. Stupidity says:

    Need to arrest the people out in the community who committing all the crime and taking away our love ones from us. The BVI need our prayers??‍♂️

  26. hmmm says:

    600 in first 6 months!! That is a terrible statistic. Basically it means no one cares, which we knew already. 😀

  27. Real talk says:

    I don’t agree with the privilege of police Officers or othet emergancy workers not wearing seatbelts and on their cell phones while on duty. I’ve live in many places and I’ve never seen a police officer, state troopers, fire fighters nor emt or worker not wearing their seat belt or on the phone. We have to lead by example. Not abide by the law and the law in forces don’t set examples that’s bs. But this is BVI they create their laws for civilians and emergancy workers. Smh.

    The police need to be on the streets more I agree with a lot of what people post about the round about traffic officers need to be present. The taxi drivers stopping any old how along the road. And these right hand drive vehicle they need to stop it as they don’t stay on their side of the road.

  28. Enforcement is Key says:

    Glad to know that we are moving in the right direction – finally. And while we are at it, let us ensure that vehicles stop using the helipad across from the hospital parking lot for their private parking space. You never know when an emergency may occur and the space would be required at short notice for its real purpose.

    Shame on the thoughtless people who park their cars there and go about their business.

  29. Island life says:

    get rid of seatbelt law, there is no need to wear seatbelt on such a small island, there designed for high speed moving cars, years ago when we had no seat belt law, people would drive with in reason.

    Like 4
    Dislike 1
  30. Starting on the right foot says:

    The police first need to do their job, u guys here snitching back stabbing each other, look at the traffic in road town, what causing it to back up so much, the police department needs to control water front where everything goes wrong for the traffic in road town, why can’t they get these simply things in order, come on, the town is too small to can’t control certain things. ARE THE POLICE ONLY HERE TO GIVE TICKETS OR WAIT ON PHONE CALLS TO HEAR SOMEONE SNITCHING ON SOMEONE, COME ON RVIPF DO SOME PROGRESSIVE WORK FOR OUR TAX MONEY!

  31. Lance says:

    I saw drivers with their children head sticking out the window while driving and children without seats belt so this is a good thing

    Like 1
    Dislike 1
  32. Louise says:

    Well good on ya! Put on that seat belt, tuck away the cell phone, now that your hands are free, turn on the ignition and grab that beer….there is certainly NO fine for that!

  33. Concern says:

    They are so concern for seatbelt for kids but what about proper seatbelts for children in cars. Children have height restrictions to wear seatbelts or need boosters, children should not be in anyone’s lap. BVI so backward won’t enforce laws until something fatal happens.

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