Image of the temperature monitoring system in the cab of a transport van


The death of Mr. Ward led to an improved focus on welfare during prisoner transports  Mr. Ward was a 46-year-old local Aboriginal Elder who died of heatstroke at Kalgoorlie District Hospital on 27 January 2008, after collapsing in the back of a custody transport vehicle. The Coroner found that Mr. Ward suffered heatstroke while being …

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Image of officers adding restraints to a PIC through pod door hatch before boarding a transfer flight

Key findings

Clear focus on prisoner welfare, but gaps exist Since the death of Mr. Ward, the Department has implemented a clear focus on welfare during prisoner transports. This focus is present through policy and practice throughout the various stages of a prisoner movement and demonstrates the Department’s commitment to preventing mistreatment. However, we identified some areas …

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Image of transfer van with the back doors and pod door open


Overall, this review found that the delivery of regional and remote prisoner transports is a complex operation that is generally delivered in a safe, secure and humane manner. Maintaining a focus on policy and procedural compliance, across all aspects of prisoner transport, will assist the Department in preventing unsafe or inhumane practices.

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Image of aircraft used to transfer prisoners


Recommendation 1 Prepare Transfer Plans that outline potential responses for expressed self-harm intent or actual self-harm incidents, in accordance with COPP 12.4 – Prisoner Transfers Recommendation 2 Amend COPP 12.4 – Prisoner Transfers to include consideration of deactivated ARMS alerts in the assessment of prisoners ‘Of Self-harm Concern’ Recommendation 3 Develop policy that outlines procedures …

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