LOCAL highway patrol officers are some of the first in the state to trial a new rollout of iPads designed to cut down on police paperwork.
The workers behind the project believe they can save Barwon highway patrol officers up to an hour every shift, meaning more police on the roads for longer.
The new iPad-minis are being trialled in Moree and Narrabri to test the capability of the network with country police.
The local officers will trade the pen and paper ticket books for the short term with an iPad-mini, the new handy tool for writing out tickets.
Project Commander Karen McCarthy told The Leader it would allow highway patrols cars to become a mobile office.
“It allows us to do the data entry on the side of the road,” she said.
“They can look up our systems, electronically issue the infringements to drivers or post it out to them as normal.
“It also means the officer doesn’t have to return to the station to enter the data into the system.”
The Mobile Notices system was developed by police, for police, and announced by Police Minister Mike Gallacher earlier this year.
Commander McCarthy said the early signs look good, too.
“From the trial we can see that it shortens the stop on the road and shortens the amount of time officers spend in the office,” she said.
“Between 45 minutes and hour a shift per officer – and over a period of time, that adds up. And it also means they don’t have to handwrite every infringement.”
Barwon Highway Patrol was one of three regional locations selected for the trial outside of Sydney.
“We were trying to make sure that the device and application was suitable for all environments,” Commander McCarthy said.
“We want it to be suitable for all frontline police.”
The remote areas of the command made the area a priority to test, but having no internet connection outside of the towns won’t be a barrier, either.
“The information can be stored on the device and officers can go about their work, then their information will automatically upload when they return to connectivity,” Commander McCarthy said.
The trial won’t last long, with local police to have their say on the trial in coming weeks.
From there, a report will be prepared for the NSW government on the effectiveness of the Mobile Notices program to see whether it can gain funding for a permanent statewide rollout.