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VICTORIA, B.C. — The B.C. government introduced legislation today that would eliminate the blue carbon copy piece of paper associated with getting a traffic ticket.
The legislation introduced today includes amendments to the Offence Act that will allow the province to switch to electronic ticketing or eTicketing. The government says that the shift from paper to electronic tickets printed at the roadside will cut data entry errors and improve the speed of ticket processing.
Currently, ticket data written by police at the roadside is entered up to four times by police, ICBC and court staff, and others.
The government says that the multiple entires magnify the potential for errors, increasing the likelihood that a ticket may be challenged and overturned, and delaying government’s ability to identify dangerous drivers and take action. The amendments would authorize new processes that will more quickly flag dangerous drivers for more, safety-related sanctions, up to and including licence suspension.
“This new technology means safer roads for all British Columbians as it helps us to intervene more quickly with dangerous drivers by getting critical information entered into databases in real time,” said Public Safety Minister and Solicitor General Mike Farnworth. “Modernizing this process allows police to spend less time on the roadside writing tickets, and allows drivers to pay their bills more conveniently.”
The also said that offenders would be able to pay fines online with eTicketing, along with the current options of paying by phone, mail, or in person. The same fine reductions that are now in place for those that pay tickets within 30 days would still be kept.
Next spring, a number of police agencies throughout B.C. will test electronic ticketing devices and processes on a pilot basis. The pilot would give feedback on the province wide roll-out of eTicketing at a later date.
A further proposed amendment to the Motor Vehicle Act serves to simply clarify language related to immediate roadside prohibitions for alcohol-affected drivers. These changes will not affect police enforcement or penalties imposed under this law.
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