Stab vests given to traffic wardens

STAB-PROOF vests bought for Ipswich traffic wardens due to concerns over late-night attacks have been issued to staff, The Evening Star has learned. Borough council chiefs took the radical step of buying ten “military-style” vests in May for use by anyone who wanted to wear one.

STAB-PROOF vests bought for Ipswich traffic wardens due to concerns over late-night attacks have been issued to staff, The Evening Star has learned.

Borough council chiefs took the radical step of buying ten “military-style” vests in May for use by anyone who wanted to wear one.

A spokesman for the council said it is now mandatory for parking enforcement officers to wear the vests, which cost £54.64 each when working in the evening.

He said: "Following a risk assessment earlier in the year we have issued the vests because the health and safety of our employees is the highest priority.”


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The council employs a total of 15 parking enforcement officers of which ten work in the evenings.

Each of the officers working in the evening now has to wear the vests on shifts after 6pm although they can wear them during the day as well if they want. The officers started wearing vests in June.

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The purchase of the vests were prompted by a risk assessment into evening work which highlighted a number of issues, including the possibility of drunken attacks on the street, traffic wardens being followed at the end of their shift and threatening behaviour.

Despite the risks being flagged up as “low”, plans were drawn up to provide stab-proof vests for anyone wanting them as well as conflict management and self-defence training.

Weblink:

www.ipswich.gov.uk

Council traffic wardens took over responsibility for parking enforcement in October last year. It was formerly a police responsibility.

Police had four designated traffic wardens. The council now employs 15.

The stab-proof vests were bought from Norwich Road army surplus shop Kombat.uk.>

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