Automated Enforcement: Get it Right, Make it Safe

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Philip J. Wijers

The focus lies on recommendations for policy makers in connection with the “enforcement chain” concept. In particular with automated enforcement (e.g. speed and red light cameras) this chain concept is crucial: if one link is not effective or efficient, enforcement is compromised and road safety is negatively affected. The automated enforcement chain consists of a dozen links from detection and measurement to fine collection and/or court proceedings. It also includes basic issues such as vehicle registration and readability of license plates. Many counties struggle to get the wide range of multi-disciplinary aspects of the enforcement chain right and are thus not able to optimise their enforcement and improve road safety.Key bottlenecks in the automated enforcement chain can be found e.g. when

  1. the legal and operational framework and its capacity are not in place for dealing with automated traffic enforcement and the resulting huge volumes of traffic violations
  2. the license plate/vehicle owner and/or driving license administration are not in order
  3. inadequate requirements for the legal integrity of evidence and equipment homologation
  4. ticket processing, issuance and fine collection are ineffective and inefficient
  5. authorities argue over ticket revenue and funding of road safety investments e.g. enforcement equipment
  6. political and administrative support for automated traffic enforcement are wavering
  7. public support suffers because the background, results and road safety benefits of enforcement are not properly communicated through various media.

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