Should drivers be rewarded for good behaviour?

I recently spotted a story about police in New Zealand giving out a whole new style of ticket to drivers – a ‘positive ticket’.

Of course, we hear all the time about speeding tickets but I’d never heard of a positive ticket before.

According to the article – published in the Northern Advocate – it’s all part of a five-week road safety campaign in Northland which will see drivers who stick to the speed limit rewarded with the chance to win grocery vouchers. At the same time drivers caught going over the limit will be handed ‘traditional’ speeding tickets.

The story raises some really interesting issues. Of course, all drivers should stick to the rules of the road – but we know that not all of them do. The simple fact that speed kills is clearly not enough of a deterrent for some people, but are rewards for obeying the law the most suitable way of achieving slower speeds?

I had a look into whether ‘positive tickets’ had been tested in any other parts of the world and discovered that ‘Positive Ticketing Campaigns’ had been tried out in Canada last year. Officers with the Prince Albert Police Service in Canada had handed out tickets to young people for doing something good in their community – such as picking up trash, clearing a sidewalk or deterring crime. Prizes ranged from ice creams to cinema tickets.

In a news release the police force said:
“By issuing the positive tickets, police officers can develop a rapport with youth in their patrol areas using a less authoritative approach.”

“It reinforces positive behavior by offering something of value.”

“The initiative has shown that strategic, community-based partnerships can help prevent crime and strengthen communities.”

I’ll be really interested to see the impact that the ‘positive tickets’ have in New Zealand and would love to find out what you think about this style of ticketing.

Is rewarding good drivers the way to make our roads safer?
Let me know at


Editor – One More Second