The Land Transport Authority (LTA) and the Singapore Police Force (SPF) revealed in a joint press statement today that no summons were issued for vehicles belonging to President Halimah Yacob’s convoy that were flagged for waiting along double yellow lines at Prinsep Street this week.
A photo of an LTA enforcement officer investigating a car with a special number plate, SEP1, went viral online on Wednesday. ‘SEP’ is an acronym that stands for Singapore Elected President.
According to the LTA, parking on unbroken double yellow lines is ordinarily an “illegal parking offence” and offenders can be fined between $70 to $150 depending on the type of vehicle they drove.
However, it appears that no summons were issued for the cars in the President’s convoy.
Instead, the LTA and the SPF revealed that Police Security Command (SecCom) officers, who provide security protection for figures like the President and other top political leaders, have been reminded to park the vehicle convoy “in compliance with traffic rules, without compromising their mission to ensure the safety and security of those they are escorting.”
The authorities also revealed that the LTA officer seen in the viral photo was conducting a routine patrol around the vicinity when he came across two vehicles waiting along a stretch on Prinsep Street which had double yellow lines.
The LTA officer approached the driver to move off, in accordance with traffic rules. This was probably the point when the viral image was clicked.
LTA and SPF further revealed:
“The driver informed the LTA enforcement officer that he was there to pick up the President who was leaving the place. In the midst of the engagement, the President arrived and the driver drove off. There was no summons issued.
“As part of the security protection operations, the vehicle convoy is to be positioned close to the event location in compliance with traffic rules, to facilitate swift evacuation during contingencies.”
The authorities added that the SecCom ground commander decided, in this case, for the vehicle convoy to remain waiting at the road for the President as there were no street-side parking lots available nearby that could accommodate the convoy’s quick response, in case there was an emergency.