Mr MILLAR (Gregory—LNP) (3:03 pm): I would like to wish everybody a merry Christmas. I hope members spend some time with family and friends and have a good break. Have a merry Christmas.
I am thrilled to be able to respond to the inquiry into vehicle safety, standards and technology, including engine immobiliser technology, report No. 12 for the 57th parliament. This was probably one of the longest committee reports that we have been involved in.
It started in the early part of this year. It started because we had a spate of cars being stolen and driven erratically, one which resulted in very sad and tragic circumstances earlier this year when a south-east couple were killed because of someone stealing a car. We have also seen the tragic death of a lady in Townsville because of the theft of a car and people chasing after that car. What I am trying to say is that we spent eight months on this report and basically we have not come up with much in the way of trying to fix this problem because I think we are refusing to get to the source of the problem.
As this report says on page 74—
The committee was unable to identify any jurisdictions where remote vehicle engine immobilisation technology has been implemented.
This finding was also noted by ANZPAA in its report. The ANZPAA report states:
There has been no successful implementation of a mandated REI solution across a whole vehicle fleet anywhere in the world.
We were looking to solve a problem without trying to address the source of the problem. The source of the problem is the youth stealing the cars.
We have seen it in Brisbane and in Townsville, and it is happening in the Central Highlands where I come from. We have had a spate of young offenders stealing cars from Rockhampton, even stealing cars from Blackwater and Emerald, and driving along the Capricorn Highway. Unfortunately a young offender who had been in front of the court several times was tragically killed along the Capricorn Highway. We are not getting to the source of the problem, which is making sure that breach of bail is an offence for a youth offender.
They are continuing to roll out of the Magistrates Court, straight down the road, back into a car and doing the same thing again. At page 101 of the committee report, the Queensland Police Service believes that we have to look at the source of the problem and get tough on these youth offenders.
We have to be tough on them so that we can stop them from doing what they are doing. There are too many people being injured. There are too many people's lives being impacted by this. We have to make sure that the consequences of their actions are before the court. If they breach bail it is an offence. We have to stop them. The QPS says. ...the best way we can address this issue is to look at the underlying problems...
Police officers in my own area around the Central Highlands and the Central West are frustrated when they see the same person committing the same crime time after time and not being punished. We are taking resources away from the police and their important role of not only dealing with crime but also dealing with other issues they have to deal with. They are spending more and more time trying to deal with this. They do the hard work to get the offender before the magistrate and the door revolves and they are out on the street again. We have to look at the source of the problem and make breach of bail an offence for a youth offender. I think that is incredibly important.
This report took seven months and we did not come up with anything that is going to help the minister or the police minister. We spent a lot of time trying to find something that we know is not available anywhere in the world. No-one is using this technology. We have to be careful when looking at immobilisers. Once you enact that immobiliser the person in the car cannot steer it. Where does it go? Does it stop straight away? The technology is not there. We can fix this up today: make breach of bail an offence for an offender. It is easy. We can do it in this parliament with legislation. Let us do it and then we will fix up the problem.