Vietnam metro seeks to refurbish image of traffic cops

TN News

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Ho Chi Minh City's road and railway traffic police division (PC67) is trying to improve the behavior of traffic police officers on duty by holding several classes on how to deal with the public.

The April 8-15 classes, first of their kind held by PC67, aim to have traffic cops be respectful and polite and willing to listen to people rather than causing trouble and annoying them, the Lao Dong (Labor) newspaper reported Tuesday.

PC67 chief Senior Lieutenant Colonel Tran Thanh Tra said the classes will help traffic police officers build a good image for themselves.

The officers have to be polite in informing people of the traffic violations they have committed and explain them thoroughly, he said.

Vu Gia Hien, a psychologist who is conducting the classes, said he has found that many officers do not smile or show an understanding attitude when fining traffic violators.

He said the main aim of the traffic police officers should be to help people understand the law and prevent violations rather than punishing violators.

Hien said inappropriate behavior by a traffic cop can be easily captured (with smartphones and other gadgets) and spread widely, giving the whole force a bad name.

According to statistics compiled by PC67, there were 588 cases in the first quarter of this year where traffic cops in the city refused to accept bribes.

In Hanoi, several measures have been taken to improve the public image of traffic officers, including assigning female officers to patrol congested streets during rush hour and reassigning overweight policemen to desk jobs.

Hanoi traffic police have also proposed that authorities place automated teller machines (ATMs) at police stations so that violators can pay cash into the ATMs or transfer money to police accounts to pay fines instead of going to treasuries.

Authorities in the capital city also plan to equip local traffic officers with iPads so that they can assist people with directions and also check if those breaking the laws have a previous record of violations.

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