(Black Press file photo)

B.C. police departments to roll out electronic tickets

Starting March 5, five local police departments will try a pilot program to deliver eTickets

Delta police officers will be the first in the province to issue electronic roadside traffic violation tickets starting Monday (March 5).

The electronic ticket program, known as eTickets, is part of a pilot program that the province hopes will improve accuracy and save time when issuing tickets.

“ETicketing will allow police officers to leverage technology,” said Delta police chief Neil Dubord in a press release. “The process is simply more efficient and quicker, and police officers will be freed up to do more enforcement.”

Although police officers will still be on the road, pulling drivers over, the pilot program is intended to make the paperworkside of their job more efficient.

Instead of writing up a paper ticket, officers will scan drivers’ licence information into an online ticket template, which will then automatically input offence details. Equipment mounted in the police vehicles will share this information with partners like ICBC, eliminating the need to mail tickets and re-enter the details.

According to a government press release, the contents, penalties and validity of eTickets will be the same as traditional tickets. However, those receiving an eTicket will be able to pay through PayBC, a new online service, or through the the usual payment methods.

The pilot program will be shared among five different police departments. Delta is the first to use the program, starting March 5. The Vancouver police department will begin issuing eTickets on April 2, the Prince George Municipal police department and North District RCMP will begin issuing them on April 16, and the Capital Regional District Integrated Road Safety Unit will begin on April 30.

The project will finish mid-May, and a report will be sent to the ministry in the summer.

“If we can make it harder for bad drivers to avoid the consequences of their decisions, and we can identify more quickly those drivers who perhaps shouldn’t be on the road, that will help us to prevent crashes, save lives and keep auto insurance affordable,” Mike Farnworth, minister of public safety and solicitor general, said in a press release.

“Based on the program’s design and success in other jurisdictions, we’re optimistic that we’ll see these results during the pilot.”


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