BARBADOS: Not quite! Minister of Transport 'categorically' disagrees with RBPF interpretation of Road Traffic Act - EntornoInteligente / NationNews / Related articles Cellphone crackdown Possible schooling for traffic… Lee: Enforce PSV music ban Minister of Transport Michael Lashley made it clear today his ministry “categorically” disagreed with the stance of the Royal Barbados Police Force (RBPF) that motorists seeking to use their cellphone must pull off the road and exit their vehicle in order to do so.

This had been outlined yesterday by RBPF’s Head of the Traffic Division, Acting Assistant Superintendent Ronald Stanford during a press conference.

The statement has caused raging debate among Barbadians since Stanford stated yesterday that even if a driver had pulled off the road and had parked, that once they were sitting in their vehicle, they would be considered in breach of the amended Road Traffic Act.

However, in a hastily-called press conference a short while ago, Minister Lashley, who is an attorney said:

“I want to state categorically that the Ministry of Transport and Works, that we are not in agreement with what was articulated yesterday by the representative of the Royal Barbados Police Force.”

Lashley added:

“The intent of the legislation is to prevent people from using the cell phone whilst driving. Clearly that is the intent of the law. And we believe that if someone driving a vehicle receives a call from your cell phone and decides to pull off the road, thereby observing all precautions and of course adhering to all safety precautions, that that person is within the spirit of the law.”

He emphasised:

“It is not the intent of the legislation is to penalise that person. The intent of the legislation is to deal with that driver who is on the highway or the roadway and using their cell phone.”

Regarding the RBPF’s interpretation of the legislation, Lashley said his ministry would continue to work with all stakeholders to ensure they were on the same page.

“We will continue to work with the stakeholders including the members of the Royal Barbados Police Force and we just want to clarify this position because it has caused some confusion. And I want to say to all road users that if you pull off the road, you observe all safety precautions, you’re not impeding traffic and you say I want to make a call, well use your cell phone. So I just want to make that clear.

I know the statement was made yesterday. I don’t know if it was an overly technical interpretation but I know the mischief that guides policy makers that we were seeking to remedy. That mischief is …that distracted driving is a concern for Barbadians… that is using cell phones while driving.”

BARBADOS: Not quite! Minister of Transport ‘categorically’ disagrees with RBPF interpretation of Road Traffic Act

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