At the Road Safety Conference held at the Technion:
Covert law enforcement is a more effective means to ensure safety on the roads.
|Technion research at the Transportation Research Institute is dedicated to making Israel's roads safer.|
The undercover enforcement method is the most effective and policemen and women also prefer it, so it appears from an experiment run by the Research, Information and Development Bureau of the Traffic Division of the Israel Police.
The results of the experiment, “Spring Spirit” as it was called, were presented in September at a conference held in the Faculty of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the Technion, on the subject of: Current research in the area of traffic safety and implementation in Israel. Chief Superintendent Iran Feinmessar, head of the bureau, said that the experiment ran for five months and ended at the end of July this year. The experiment tested different operational methods used by the national traffic police and was run in different police districts around the country. It included, among others, switching overt police units with covert ones and increasing the motorcycle units as well as helicopters. The Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and Arava districts were used as control groups and no changes were made there.
The main conclusion of the experiment – covert enforcement is the most efficient. Additionally, the heavy motorcycle unit proved its worth and will, therefore, be more than doubled – from 45 motorcycles to 100. Chief Superintendent Feinmessar reported that the police have also begun operating undercover heavy motorcycle teams. “It will be interesting to see drivers’ reactions when they realize that the motorcycle riding alongside them is not what they thought it was,” he said.
Another experiment that the Research Bureau ran was in stationing volunteers in reflective vests at dangerous intersections. The volunteers just stood at the intersections, did not hand out fines or make comments to pedestrians or drivers that crossed the intersection. The result of their standing in the intersection wearing the reflective vest – a decrease in the number of cars that crossed the intersection on a red light down to zero and a drop to half in the number of pedestrians who crossed the street when the light was red.