Pennsylvania State Police officers are celebrating a milestone. The department has filed its one millionth electronic traffic citation.
Big whoop, right? Well, it is for the troopers, who use the electronic filing system to increase safety and make the court process more efficient.
“No paper is filed in the courts, eliminating the need for officers to deliver the traffic citations to the district courts and for court staff to enter citation information manually into the state judiciary’s computer system,” Chief Justice of Pennsylvania Ronald D. Castille said in the celebratory announcement. “This is estimated to save court staff 77,000 hours annually.”
It works like this: a driver’s license and registration information goes into a trooper’s data terminal, and state and national databases are automatically checked to find any outstanding warrants the driver might have and to determine if the car is stolen. The driver’s information goes straight to a traffic citation instead of requiring the trooper to hand-deliver the details to court.
The system went into effect in 2010 and some smaller departments in the state have since begun doing the same.