I’ve been reading all around the net how Canada and Philadelphia are employing optical illusions to improve road safety. With all the controversy and safety questions around the this topic, I remembered how similar, yet much better implementation has been used by our local police, since middle of 2008. Back then, Croatian police started with the project involving cardboard cut-out police officers holding a radar. In very short time positive results were already visible.
Marcel Štrok, the chief of traffic police stated that “the number of traffic accidents has been cut in half, comparing to previous years before employing this experimental project in towns of Virovitica and Sisak.”
He explained how they were thinking what would be the best way to prevent traffic accidents, and how could they reach inside driver’s mind, reminding him to watch over that gas pedal. “The best thing about those cardboard radar-holding officers is that they cost less than $100 a piece”, Marcel added.
These cardboard officers were designed using photographs of real police officers, and the results were so realistic, that even today it isn’t rare for the role-model officers to get phone calls from their friends, saying how they saw then in action, while in fact they were at home at the time.