LAST Tuesday, an unmarked cash in transit (CIT) van was held up at a busy shopping centre in East Maitland, New South Wales.
The 26-year-old CIT officer, employed by United Security Enterprises, was attacked while making a delivery to the Commonwealth Bank.
An undisclosed amount of cash was seized and although police said the manhunt for those responsible continues, as we went to print, no one had been caught.
This incident isn't the first of its kind.
In fact, the Federal Government's Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal will shortly commence an investigation into the Cash in Transit sector, with a mandate to lift safety standards across the entire industry.
Last week's robbery highlighted some serious questions around the safety standards of smaller operators in the industry and the role played by big banks and others at the top of the supply chain.
Media reports show that the company was using a Toyota Hiace and not an armoured vehicle to transport the money.
Questions need to be asked whether United Security Enterprises may have compromised on safety standards to win the contract, and the big banks have to be well aware of this.
We know from experience that operators like this often ignore safety standards in terms of footpath allowances, security precautions and vehicle safety standards.
It's important that this company is now fully audited to ensure it is compliant with regulations and licensing obligations.
Cash in transit operators that ignore industry safety standards are putting the community at risk.
This robbery happened during the day at a busy shopping centre, with children and families everywhere - it's a miracle no one was injured or worse.
Unless banks and businesses end the arrangement of contracting work out to smaller cash-in-transit operators who deliberately ignore industry safety standards, then it's only a matter of time before someone else is attacked or even worse - killed while on the job.
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