An increasing number of motorists appear to be dobbing in
bad drivers, and police are welcoming the information.
Over the past four years, the number of motorists calling the
free, non-urgent traffic line has ranged between 251,000 and
This summer, Southern District police have noticed an
increase in the number of people using the *555 service.
Inspector Andrew Burns said that while police were finding
more drivers were law-abiding on Otago and Southland roads,
that had the effect of ''making bad driving examples stand
''I think people are more inclined to let us know than they
have in the past.''
Drivers were not ''narks'' by reporting bad driving but were
helping to keep the community safe, he said.
Police took reports of poor driving seriously and ''we
endeavour to take some action''.
''Sometimes we can only go so far as telling the person that
we have received a complaint, but if we get sufficient
information, we will prosecute.''
While people should be reminded not to contact *555 while
driving, he was a fan of the service, as it enabled police to
dispatch nearby patrols to a possible incident in the making.
If a motorist was spotted driving dangerously, then police
would ''do everything we can to get a patrol on the way to
hunt this vehicle down''.
If that vehicle was not located, the file would be assigned
to an officer to follow up and, if there was sufficient
evidence, a person would be charged, he said.
A police spokesman said while it was good the public was
using the *555 service, motorists were encouraged to call 111
if the incident on the road posed a serious threat to public