14 Aug 2017

NZ Post suspends recordings after complaint

8:46 am on 14 August 2017

NZ Post is stopping audio recording of postal workers following a complaint and consultation with its lawyers.

The fleet of Paxster vehicles were rolled out last year.

The four-wheel electric vehicles were fitted with cameras that recorded images and sound. Photo: New Zealand Post

New electric vehicles have dashboard cameras for security, which track the postie's GPS, and automatically record video and audio when the vehicle is switched on.

The union agreed cameras should be used for safety purposes, but argued audio recording was a breach of privacy for both the postie and whoever they were speaking with.

NZ Post acting general manager Matt Riordan said the company had consulted its lawyers and the audio recording function would be disabled today.

"Considering the impact this is having we have chosen to, as of today, to cease recording the audio.

"What we're doing is reviewing our procedures because the purpose of these recordings is so we can investigate health and safety and security incidents."

Footage had been used several times to look at health and safety incidents, and one instance had resulted in a complaint, he said.

The company was working with the Privacy Commissioner on how it could strengthen its procedures

The current cameras face forwards, while the union wanted reversing cameras for safety reasons. Mr Riordan said NZ Post would be installing the reversing versions.

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