New South Wales’ police are currently engaged in a trial program of using iPad mini tablets to issue tickets for traffic violations. The four week pilot program has police in Sydney, Australia and some of the surrounding regions trying out 20 locked iPad minis as a tool to speed up the process of issuing tickets.
An app called Mobile Notices was built by Australian firm Grindstone and incorporates suggestions from members of the police force. With the cellular iPad minis, the police are able to securely look up the records of anyone involved in a traffic stop, issue tickets that can be sent via email or MMS and even tell a driver on the spot how points they’ve lost on their license.
At the end of the trial the results will be reviewed to see if NSW police want to proceed with the program, but things look likely that they will as it is estimated that Mobile Notices will end up saving $1.2 million ($1.12 million USD) a year as well as 240,000 man hours in paperwork should they deploy this project further. “Most importantly, if the trial is a success and the app fully deployed, it will give NSW Police the opportunity to spend more time on frontline policing and less on administrative tasks back at the station – which will have a positive impact on both road safety and officer effectiveness,” NSW police Superintendent McCarthy told Delimiter.
While you might be concerned about the potential for one of these iPad minis being stolen with all of this data on it, there is actually some good news there. Lembit Pikkat, director at Gridstone, explained, “The iPads are locked down, so that any information is wiped and the device reset should anyone attempt to access them without authorisation. No data relating to the infringement notices, including photos, are stored on the device once the notice has been sent. If the police officer is out of 4G or WiFi coverage at the time of completing the notice, data is queued to send immediately once the device is back in range.”
We’ve already seen airlines using tablets to replace flight manuals, so seeing the technology make its way into law enforcement definitely makes a lot of sense as it is another field filled with paper work.
The four week trial will run through out the month of Sept.