Crashes drop but tickets soar for rogue drivers

| 01/05/2019 | 40 Comments
Cayman News Service

Police stop near Lantern Point

(CNS): Traffic statistics for 2018 released by the police Wednesday reflect a 14% drop in the actual number of reported crashes on Cayman Islands roads compared to 2017, but a stark increase in enforcement resulted in thousands of tickets being issued to rogue drivers. While the total number of collisions fell, the number of road deaths increased, as did the crashes where people sustained serious injuries. The total number of collisions in 2018 was 2353, down from 2732 in 2017 but eight people were killed on the road in eight separate crashes.

A clampdown on speeding led to a 226% increase in tickets given to drivers going too fast when compared to those fined in 2017 — a whopping 2,128 people were caught speeding compared to 652 in 2017.

DUIs also increased by almost 30%, with 328 people arrested for being drunk behind the wheel, and 613 drivers were fined for using their mobile phones while driving. Overall, police recorded 7,437 traffic offences last year compared to 4,980 in 2017.

The traffic unit was relaunched in 2017 but it was not fully staffed and equipped until 2018, which is why enforcement improved last year.

“This new resourcing had a clear and positive impact on the overall level of enforcement taking place around the islands,” police stated. “It also appears to be reflected in the gradual decrease in collisions across all categories in the quarterly numbers throughout the year, as the effect of this intensified enforcement and visibility took hold.”

Speaking at the press conference on Wednesday, when the RCIPS unveiled the statistics for crime and traffic offences, Police Commissioner Derek Byrne said tackling road safety has been identified as a priority for the National Security Council.

He said that with 41,000 vehicles on the road, the police saw an “awful lot of intemperate and really bad driving” and the traffic unit would press on with its enforcement.

But he pointed out that other factors, such as engineering and education, were important to address the Cayman Islands’ traffic troubles. He said that, given the issues, other resources may be required to help improve road safety and government has not ruled out using speed cameras.

Related story: Burglaries fell to historic low in 2018

See the full details of traffic offences in the CNS Library

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Category: Crime, Police

Comments (40)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Tickets 2128, 365 days, 5.8 per day from a compliment of 12(?) traffic officers. .4 or about half a ticket per officer, per day.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Except there are 7437 offences and the officers don’t work 365 days a year – and think there’s only 10 of them operational – 14 all up I kidding leadership and support staff. And some of those issues take lots of time to resolve- like accidents and DUI – so a bit simplistic to do a tickets per day ratio. Maybe the better comparison is number of vehicles per officer – 4100.

  2. Anonymous says:

    No driver screening, real testing and retesting then cayman will always have problems.

  3. Anonymous says:

    good work generally by rcips but they are only scratching the surface which is the pure insanity of driving in cayman.
    my dashcam records hundreds of offences every day in cayman.
    why don’t the police cars have dash cams?

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  4. Anonymous says:

    free solution…
    double all fines.
    set up privately run traffic police whose job it is to catch offenders with dash cams monted in their cars
    they will get a cut of the fine to fund themselves and cig gets the rest….plus the police can concentrate on real crime fighting (or we could reduce the police farce numbers)

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  5. Anonymous says:

    Get the trucks out of the centre lane. How hard can it be to enforce that? I honestly think many of these truck drivers just don’t know the road rules. Sort them out.

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  6. Anonymous says:

    Most of the vehicles on the road are being driven by people who are either tired, angry, sleepy or under the influence of alcohol and/or illegal drugs.

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  7. Sherry says:

    They need to enforce the mobile phone law. Yesterday a guy trying to come out of a junction while talking on his phone – all over the road. There is a law why isn’t it being enforced. Same as blackout windows where you can’t see the person that’s driving – although they’re probably talking on their phone…..

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    • Cheese Face says:

      Like the red jeep wrangler I just saw in Camana Bay? You couldn’t even see through the windscreen let alone the side windows.

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    • Anonymous says:

      It is being enforced, it’s just like a tidal wave of flouting, being enforced by a relatively tiny, and up until lately, severely under resourced unit. The traffic unit more than pays for itself, but I agree, there’s a lot more low hanging fruit to gather.

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  8. Anonymous says:

    People!! Please learn how to use a roundabout and a 4-way stop correctly!!!!!
    A roundabout is NOT a stop sign!!! Youse practically treat it like a 4-way stop and you don’t even know how to use a 4-way stop!!
    Key Tip – A roundabout is to keep traffic FLOWING. Again, this is NOT a stop sign. You should already be looking ahead to see if you are free to go. No need to stop and look. Be prepared. Get off your phone.
    The person to your right has the right of way. You do not stop to allow someone on your left to go ahead of you unless you are not able to make it through the roundabout and that person is carrying on through the roundabout (does that makes sense?). There is NO stopping in the roundabout. If you cannot make it across, you must yield.
    That’s it! Easy peasy.

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    • Johnny Rotten says:

      Not so easy for some pinheads who don’t even know left from right let alone know what indicators are. Don’t you just love those idiots that stop at the roundabout to let cars in even though they have right of way.

      You know this is not going to get any better when some cops don’t even navigate roundabouts properly. The traffic law needs to change so that if you enter the left (outside lane) of a roundabout you absolutely have to get off at the next exit. Most accidents on a roundabout are caused either by changing lanes whilst on the roundabout or whizzing around the outside lane essentially cutting of drivers wanting to exit.

      A potential solution would be to install high resolution monitored cameras on each exit of a roundabout, snap a photo of offending drivers and send them a summons via email. Hell we already have the tech installed to track vehicles. An added solution to collect fines would be to link licence fees and infraction fees to your phone, water and electricity accounts. You don’t pay your fees and fines then your utilities get cut.

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  9. Anonymous says:

    Pretty amazing that 1 out of every twenty cars on the road was being driven by a drunk during the year. And that’s just the ones who were caught. So if you meet a hundred cars on the way to the grocery, five are probably being driven by a drunk driver. On saturday nights it’s probably half.

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    • Anonymous says:

      That’s some fuzzy math, glad you’re not in charge of statistics. With 328 arrests out of 41,000 cars how do you get 5%?

    • Anonymous says:

      how does your math work? 328 arrests x 20 = 6560. Way more licenced vehicles than that, even before factoring in the unlicenced ones. Is there some other source for the number of drunk drivers other than the arrests that gets you your ratio?

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    • Anonymous says:

      You must be a maths professor.

  10. Anonymous says:

    I find this very encouraging, as obviously monitoring is stopping people from driving dangerously (whether speeding or drunk). They should install speed cameras as I think this could actually help even more as they would be caught more frequently than actual man power could. It would also free up the police to help with other matters. But very encouraging. I hope we keep up this trend.

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  11. Roger Davies says:

    I have always been a supporter of the RCIPS, but when it comes to traffic tickets, I had a really infuriating experience last year. A young Jamaican police officer accompanied by a young female officer stopped me in his patrol car near the hospital 4 way junction. He proceeded to have his fellow officer issue me with a ticket for failing to stop at the junction. It was late Saturday afternoon, there was absolutely no traffic at the 4 way stop apart from me and I slowed almost to a halt and then proceeded straight across at less than a walking pace, on to Walkers Rd. I admitted failing to completely stop but suggested that given the circumstances the officer just issue a warning, but to no avail.
    Now every single day I see dozens of motorist run red lights at busy junctions, and many times I have had to brake to avoid a collision, yet I have never heard of a ticket being issued for this far more dangerous offence. Maybe this particular officer issues tickets for travelling at 31mph in a 30mph zone.
    It is important that the police maintain a good relationship with the public, but this type of behavior from police officers has the opposite affect. I still have the ticket and would be pleased to provide a copy to the Traffic Unit if required.

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    • Jotnar says:

      So your point is that you broke the law but think you shouldn’t get a ticket because others commit more serious offences and get away with it – because unlike you they don’t encounter a police officer who actually does his job. You presumably don’t appreciate the irony in complaining about one officer upholding the law whilst simultaneously complaining about other officers not upholding the law. If all officers were as diligent as the chap who ticketed you perhaps others wouldn’t flout the law – think of that? Or is it all about you? Cry me a river.

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      • Roger Davies says:

        Jotnar, I was not flouting the law, just about everyone who approaches that junction in the same circumstances does the same. Where is the risk?, by supporting this officer you are encouraging more over the top behavior by the police.I take it you would have no objection to being ticketed for exceeding the speed limit by 1mph, or would not complain if you are broadsided at traffic lights by someone running a red light.
        I see other issues at play here, maybe if I was an Ebanks your response would be different. At least I am willing to put my name behind my comment, how about replying with your real name.

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        • Anonymous says:

          ‘I admitted failing to completely stop’. You broke the law, got caught….move along, nothing to see here. And until the law changes to something similar to the UK, whereby points are issued for mobile phone offences possibly leading to disqualification, NO-ONE will give a monkey’s about using their phone.

          • Anon says:

            7.36pm Have you ever heard of discretion, that’s why you don’t get a ticket for breaking the speed limit if the excess is minimal even when you are breaking the law.You miss entirely the point made about aggravating the public.

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  12. Anonymous says:

    When the questionable stats randomly improve year-over-year, the RCIPS are always keen to claim credit, and when they randomly degrade, they issue brash statements of scorn directed at the public, as if were to serve them. All the while, we are made to pay more and more, without any discernible improvement in visible community presence, ie trust-building.

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  13. Anonymous says:

    The only way to combat the current traffic violations will be to implement combined license plate reader technology with speed detection . But to put up the required technology will require a significant investment. Probably outside the realistic cost expectation for a small population, I’d imagine.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Speed detectors cannot detect overloaded dump trucks, see their loose cargo, witness their dangerous lane wanderings, signal failures, hear their engine compression brakes, or feel the rocks that spill off their tailgates. We need more officers per shift distributed in the field for a variety of reasons, traffic enforcement being just one of them. With our spending, the equivalent of some medium-sized-country defense budgets, hundreds of officers and vehicles, and fancy P25 coms, the RCIPS are running out of excuses. These self-congratulatory PR efforts are offensive to everyone that has open eyes, the same people that are sent the ever-rising tab!

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      • Anonymous says:

        Or catch the dump trucks speeding. Yesterday I saw one come off the south sound cut-off at Hurley’s Roundabout at great speed. Hope the K9 officer checking out the fender bender at Old Crewe Road caught that idiot but I doubt it.

  14. Anonymous says:

    keep up good work rcip! as native i happy of your work…

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  15. Anonymous says:

    Good job guys but you still have a long way to go. There is never a day on our roads where you don’t see reckless driving. You should also start enforcing school zone speed limits. Most cars ignore the flashing yellow lights.

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  16. Anonymous says:

    In other news, actually enforcing laws makes us safer. Shocker.

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  17. Anonymous says:

    Seatbelts; Please enforce that, and cell phones being used.

    I see in one morning on my way to work, at least 20 infractions, EVERY DAY! please use an unmarked vehicle, and get these selfish pricks off the road. If you’re phone call or message cannot wait for several minutes, when you live on a tiny island, you need to give up on life.

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    • Cheese Face says:

      AND ENFORCE CHILD RESTRAINTS!!!! Let the selfish ***** kill themselves but not their innocent kids.

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  18. Anonymous says:

    Go on, install your speed cameras and watch crashes increase by 5x. Stop people using roads for the speeds for which they were actually designed and enforce the ridiculous limits. ‘We saw intemperate driving’: that’s because the road network sucks and there are too many vehicles of all shapes and sizes operated by people going nowhere in a hurry when most people on this island are barely getting by and don’t have time to sit in traffic. I was stuck behind a tour bus, stuck behind a rental death trap driven by absent-minded tourists the whole way to work this morning. 30 in a 30 for 10 straight minutes is enough to make anyone ‘intemperate’ in the morning. Build more damn roads and give all roads realistic speed limits so that we can move around efficiently and live our lives, that’s all we ask.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Build more roads??? We wouldn’t need three lanes if NRA started putting in cycling lanes from the beginning and unna would get off your fat rumps and cycle to work for one.

      I laugh every time I see cyclists breeze right by the Hurley’s gridlock.

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    • Anonymous says:

      You are a perfect example of the problem in Cayman

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    • Anonymous says:

      “30 in a 30”! That’s a problem for you? 30 is fast enough on a road with lots of streets joining it, most of which are residential. The problem is people doing 40 or even 50 in a 30. And not giving a sh*t about cyclists, pedestrians or anyone else using the road.

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