Transit officers and ticket inspectors

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What powers does a transit officer have?

A transit officer is not a police officer, but they work closely with Tasmania Police to patrol the bus network across Tasmania and have the power to issue fines for ticketing and behavioural offences.

If you’re on a bus, train or tram and a police officer wants to speak to you, their powers are governed by the ordinary police laws.

A transit officer is allowed to ask for your name and address if they reasonably believe you might be breaking the law, you must answer truthfully.

If you don’t answer a transit officer’s questions, or if you lie to them or try to stop them from doing their job, you can be fined.

What sort of things can a transit officer fine me for?

If you break the rules on public transport, you can be fined.

Some of things you might be fined for are:

  • Travelling without a valid ticket;
  • Damaging or interfering with property;
  • Smoking;
  • Consuming alcohol;
  • Consuming food or drink on a bus or train;
  • Placing feet on seats;
  • Possessing a weapon; and
  • Putting part of your body or an object out the window of a bus or train.

To avoid a fine, you should always pay the correct fare and behave politely on public transport.

Can a transit officer arrest me?

A transit officer does not have any power of arrest beyond an ordinary person.

If they witness you committing a crime, they may use reasonable force to detain you until the police arrive.

Can a transit officer search me?

Transit officers do not have the power to search you or confiscate your property.

Can I be kicked off public transport?

A transit officer can demand that you get off the bus immediately if the reasonably believe you’re breaking the law. If you don’t follow this direction, you may be fined.

What should I do if I think a transit officer has done the wrong thing?

If you believe a transit officer has done the wrong thing, you should make a complaint online here or call Metro Tasmania on 13 22 01.

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