The post [about paying teenagers to catch out underage tobacco sales] got me thinking about other areas that we could assist authorities to do their job. For example, I don’t think that the Budget has done anything to significantly increase police presence.
I think someone mentioned on a thread a while ago, the idea of using on board cameras in cars to record road offences and forward these to police to act on. I saw some flaws in this idea if someone had a vendetta or if the footage was altered but what if the police kept a database of identified vehicles and, when they received perhaps ten authentically dated reports less than three months old from separate sources, were able to then penalise the owner of the offending vehicle for at least one common offence. Reporting drivers could be given an incentive by getting a very small discount off their own rego every time an offence was enforced (ie the originators of all ten reports would get a discount).
One obvious problem I can see is drivers taking stupid actions (or trying to manually operate their cameras) trying to record other allegedly offending vehicles but perhaps this would be easily identifiable if sufficient footage was required both before and after the offence.
I know many people will think this is a terrible idea and would turn us into more of a nanny/police state but, apart from the occasional speeding offence, we all suffer from so many other offences that go undetected. Unlike speed cameras or a particular event sited by police, these reports would have the potential to show a pattern of specific and repeated offences by some drivers (eg, seat belts, phone use, not indicating) rather than when someone is simply absent minded.
Any views? What other ideas might work?