Traditional Road Safety programs have addressed road safety through education, enforcement and childhood intervention in different ways with varied levels of success. Positive Strokes is a Road Safety Campaign behavior change initiative that is based on the following premises:
- Majority of road users add to the chaos and indiscipline on the road
- Regardless of what one has learnt, new drivers will imitate existing road behavior
This program is to identify good road behaviors and reinforce such behavior through commendations or positive strokes. This program is different from others that have gone before in the following ways:
- Youth (people who have recently started driving or are about to start driving) will be engaged in identifying good road behavior. This exercise will allow them to observe driving behaviors from a distance, as an outsider. Since they will be engaged in identifying good behavior and watching bad behavior, it will foster a sense of ownership and civic responsibility among youth thus nurturing and strengthening the active citizenship dispositions in them.
- This will be a sustained effort to change road use behavior. A prominently displayed reward on the vehicle will serve as a constant reminder to the driver of the vehicle as well as serve as a positive influence on other drivers.
Positive Strokes has two event offerings. A TMC Event that is held at the Traffic Management Centre and a Junction Event held at a busy traffic intersection in the city.
The TMC Event
During the TMC event, volunteers monitor live traffic on computer screens by controlling high tech TMC zoom pan tilt cameras located at junctions around the city. When a vehicle is seen to be showing good road behavior, its vehicle registration number is recorded along with the location and reasons for commendation. From among the vehicles recorded by volunteers, Bangalore traffic police shortlist vehicles with a violation free record for a predetermined period of time. Such ‘good road users’ receive a commendation letter and a sticker to display on their vehicles from the Bangalore Traffic police, acknowledging their safe road behavior.
The Junction Event
At a Junction event volunteers and the Bangalore traffic police present at a traffic junction identify good road users and present them with a reward on the spot. The junction event is organized to capture those behaviors that cannot be captured on camera and is also intended to spread awareness on good road behavior.