NSW prisons operating at 112%

A NEW report into Law and Order and Emergency Services has shown the crisis within the state's prison system is ongoing.

According to the report by the NSW Auditor-General, the state's prisons operated on average at 112% of capacity in 2014-15.

He cites overcrowding as a cause of prisoner tension and higher risks of reoffending.

Overcrowded prisons are also impacting NSW Police and the bail courts due to capacity issues. The Auditor-General has identified the need to improve forward planning of prison infrastructure requirements.

The report came out following two prison escapes in NSW on Monday, including one where a man escaped from Glenn Innes in a garbage truck in an attempt to get to Maclean.

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The Auditor-General also stated overcrowding increased the risk of the Baird Government's state priority targets for justice not being met.

Shadow Minister for Corrections Affairs Guy Zangari will put more pressure on Corrections Minister David Elliott who is "struggling" to manage prisoner overcrowding, a spike in escapes and contraband like mobile phones and drugs being found regularly inside the walls.

"The Auditor-General joins a growing chorus of experts pointing to serious failures in the NSW prison system," Mr Zangari said.

"The Government has no plan to adequately deal with overcrowding or the infrastructure needed to house a growing inmate population."

Topics:  overcrowded prisons prison escape

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