A Brisbane driver has paid the price for his partner’s seemingly innocent act in the passenger seat, which was picked up by a seatbelt detection camera.
The woman had put her jumper on over the top of her seatbelt, and while there appear to be hints that the belt was worn correctly in the image, Queensland Revenue Office still slapped the motorist with a $1100 fine.
“I got hit with a $1100 fine for my partner not wearing her seatbelt ‘correctly’ in the passenger seat,” the Queensland motorist shared on social media.
Watch the latest news and stream for free on 7plus >>
“The seatbelt is worn correctly, but her jumper is covering the seatbelt across her chest,” he said.
His partner had put her jumper on over the top of the seatbelt, he explained.
Sydney woman cops $387 fine over confusing driving act
Rare Australian number plate to sell for eye-watering price at auction
“Admittedly it’s not the smartest thing to do, but also don’t think it’s a $1000 mistake.
“You can still see it buckled in, and you can see the shoulder strap coming out of the jumper.”
He then asked his followers if they thought it was worth disputing the fine.
A Brisbane driver has paid the price for his partner’s bizarre passenger seat act, which was picked up by a seatbelt detection camera. Credit: RedditThe woman had put a jumper on over her seatbelt, obscuring it. Credit: Reddit
“The hoodie is pushing the belt to her neck instead of being over her shoulder. It has to be on the shoulder. You can try to contest it, but it’s unlikely you’ll get anywhere,” one social media user commented.
“The problem is, she can’t prove she’s wearing it correctly over her torso. Definitely contest it, but I can see it going either way,” another said.
“I’m not sure about a law that suggests when wearing a seatbelt it must remain visible at all times,” another person said.
“I think if they’re going to govern this with AI, then they need to update their policies.”
“My wife gets cold sometimes, I get hot,” another user said.
“I put the air con on, she turns on the heated seat and covers herself with a blanket. Is using a blanket now illegal?”
One person shared their own similar story, saying they contested the fine but lost.
“I got two seatbelt fines in two months from my partner also ‘not wearing it properly’ — this was back in January and February of 2022.
“The fine for January didn’t come in the mail until May. I received the February fine in April.
“Go figure. … so there was nothing to deter me (or my partner) from being aware that it wasn’t worn correctly, which I took to court as the seatbelt was clearly being worn in both photos. Buckled. Across the lap, on top of the shoulder.”
In court, it was found their partner’s seatbelt was ‘not adjusted and restrained properly’, they said.
“They said the seatbelt was not on top of her shoulder and was slightly over her shoulder as it was too far from her neck.”
“Trust me, if it ain’t visible on the shoulder, you have no argument. I even had to pay court fees, which made it worse.”
You can find more information regarding seatbelt fines on the Queensland Government’s website.
Queensland Revenue Office responds
Seatbelt-related infringements are administered by the Queensland Revenue Office (QRO).
“Seatbelt cameras take images of each vehicle travelling in the lane of traffic that the camera is monitoring,” QRO said.
“The images are then filtered by Artificial Intelligence software which detects if there was possible failure to correctly wear a seatbelt by the driver or front seat passenger.
“If a possible offence is detected, the images are reviewed by an authorised officer within QRO to determine whether to issue an infringement.
“If an infringement notice is issued and the registered operator feels they were incorrectly fined, the infringement holder may submit an inquiry online to have the matter reviewed. These details are available on the infringement notice.
“In this event, QRO temporarily suspends any further action until the review is complete.
“Fine recipients also have the option to elect to have the matter heard in court.”