MORE than 170 Dorset police vehicles are still on the road – despite being over ten years old or reaching 150,000 miles.

Police and Crime Commissioner Martyn Underhill says that one of the most common complaints he gets from police officers is about the state of their vehicles.

A report before Tuesday’s Police and Crime Panel said that 35 per cent of the fleet are being used beyond what is considered economically viable.

“Wherever I go in the force officers complain about the condition of their vehicles and that’s just not acceptable,” said Mr Underhill.

Figures show that the force currently has 12 vehicles over the 150,000 mile threshold and 162 beyond the age limit – despite the fact that the vehicle budget for the 2017-18 was underspent by £500,000.

A report from the chief finance officer, Alexis Garlick, came to much the same conclusion as the Police and Crime Commissioner about the state of Dorset police vehicles: “It had been become apparent that there are numerous vehicles in the fleet which are old, worn, and with faded livery which does not reflect well on the Force’s image or the Police Officers’ driving experience.”

The force replaced 58 vehicles in 2017-18 and plans to replace 38 in the current financial year at a cost of £889,500; 48 the following year costing £927,500 but only 44 in 2020-21 at a cost of £795,000.