In response to a recent post about a hoon on a roundabout in Mitchell, several people – including myself – commented that when they had reported dangerous or stupid acts of driving to the police, the police were basically not interested in following it up.
It has often struck me that even with all of the modern advances of technology and social networking impacting on so many other areas of the way we live our lives, policing of the roads hasn’t fundamentally changed since cars were invented.
If the police – or some contraption operated by the police – didn’t see it, then it may as well have not happened.
And so we as responsible road users sit back and watch those occasional extreme acts of stupid or dangerous driving – by people who have clearly shown that they’ll keep driving that way, and will probably go on to kill or injure somebody – powerless to do a thing about it.
WHAT IF … the police were to establish a website where any road user could report details of an act of dangerous driving they had witnessed; and also enter their own driver’s license number to at least ensure some degree of authenticity and accountability.
Now obviously the police would not be in a position to followup every report, but once a trend starts developing for a particular vehicle, the driver would at the very least receive a visit from the boys & girls in blue.
The objective doesn’t necessarily need to be to prosecute. It’s the deterrent effect that would be created, if irresponsible drivers knew that any Joe Citizen out there on the roads with them actually had some minute degree of power to do something about the acts of dangerous and stupid driving they witnessed.
Perhaps it’s time we had a fundamental re-think about the way our roads are policed, including making best use of the technology we all now have at our fingertips.