MEDICINE HAT, AB - The Medicine Hat Police Service (MHPS) has launched an electronic ticketing pilot program for traffic related offences.
"The first day is today," explained MHPS Inspector, Brent Secondiak. "So, we're doing a pilot project with four of our members for about a month. The total cost of the project was $55,000 and that was for the hardware and software. We know it will be effective and cost-efficient for the police service."
Secondiak says the MHPS has been working towards this electronic ticketing program for roughly two-years now.
He believes this process will significantly reduce the time it takes to write and process a ticket.
"We had someone full time that was basically processing paper tickets, so that should substantially reduce that time administratively for us. But, also on the street for those who receive a ticket, the time should be substantially less. It should be well under a minute for multiple tickets."
Before the pilot program, members of the traffic unit had to hand-write all tickets, which could've taken anywhere from 5-20 minutes, depending on how many tickets were being issued.
"Now, all the data is pre-filled from scanning your drivers licence. So, you'll get that information instantly on a computer screen. The officer can select a charge code and simply hit print and the ticket spits out on a printer roll and the ticket can be issued immediately."
In addition to saving time, Secondiak says this new system will also reduce the errors made on tickets as well.
"Errors ranged from names spelled wrong to addresses that were wrong and that can create some obvious complications. With this system, it's all electronic and it's impossible to make a mistake. There are still computer errors that can be done, but the actual issues on the ticket will be non-existent."
Secondiak says he didn't have the exact number on error-rates, but he assured CHAT News that there were 'a lot'.
Barring no major complications with the e-ticketing program, Secondiak says the equipment should be available to roughly 20 members of the traffic unit in approximately one month's time.
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