A friend of mine recently got a rude shock when he opened a Queensland Government stamped envelope. I’ll let him tell the story:
“I pulled out an ultimatum from the Department of Transport and Main Roads that read “you have accumulated 12 demerit points against your traffic history through traffic offences committed during a continuous period of 3 years. I’m then blatantly told I have to choose one of two options and, get this, ‘There is no opportunity for you to appeal against this requirement’ in bold letters.
Like hell there isn’t. Like Wayne Swan, these people can’t count. The simple maths showed the sum of points lost was 9, not 12. How can you get that wrong? I’ll add, it had been 17 months since my last offence, they said they had finally ‘caught up’ with the paperwork. In any event the letter was waived, but not after about 3 days of grief thinking how could I survive on a few points for a year (in reality you only get 1 point as 2 or more you’re out for 6 months, so they say). I’d even moved off the GS into the Hilux just to practice being one of those wonderful law abiding citizens who never do anything wrong.
Before leaving the customer service centre, where I must say I had a surprisingly helpful lady assist me, I did ask how many points do I have left. She said ‘you’ve lost 9 so you only have 3 left’. To which I noted, how can that be given points lost in 2008 and 2009 are now back in my kitty. ‘Oh let me just check again’ was the reply. Guess what, from walking in looking at a suspension or a Good Driving Behaviour period of 12 months, I walked out with my licence intact and 8 points to my name.
So as they say, the moral is don’t believe everything you read as gospel, never agree to an ultimatum from Queensland DoT without checking first and never, by impulse, fill in your choice electronically if you get one of these letters. Funnily enough, about a week later I get another letter ‘reminding’ me to behave despite having 8 valid points and no case to answer. Imagine if we ran our businesses like this.”