Optimising the length of Random Breath Tests : results from the Queensland Community Engagement Trial

Mazerolle, Lorraine, Bates, Lyndel, Bennett, Sarah, White, Gentry, Ferris, Jason, & Antrobus, Emma (2015) Optimising the length of Random Breath Tests : results from the Queensland Community Engagement Trial. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Criminology, 48(2), pp. 256-276.

[img] Accepted Version (PDF 393kB)
Administrators only | Request a copy from author

View at publisher


Research suggests that the length and quality of police-citizen encounters affect policing outcomes. The Koper Curve, for example, shows that the optimal length for police presence in hot spots is between 14 and 15 minutes, with diminishing returns observed thereafter. Our study, using data from the Queensland Community Engagement Trial (QCET), examines the impact of encounter length on citizen perceptions of police performance. QCET involved a randomised field trial, where 60 random breath test (RBT) traffic stop operations were randomly allocated to an experimental condition involving a procedurally just encounter or a business-as-usual control condition. Our results show that the optimal length of time for procedurally just encounters during RBT traffic stops is just less than 2 minutes. We show, therefore, that it is important to encourage and facilitate positive police–citizen encounters during RBTat traffic stops, while ensuring that the length of these interactions does not pass a point of diminishing returns.

Impact and interest:

1 citations in Scopus
Search Google Scholar™
4 citations in Web of Science®

Citation counts are sourced monthly from Scopus and Web of Science® citation databases.

These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.

Citations counts from the Google Scholar™ indexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.

ID Code: 68784
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: police legitimacy, police performance, procedural justice, random breath tests, RBTs, traffic stops
DOI: 10.1177/0004865814532661
ISSN: 1837-9273
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MATHEMATICAL SCIENCES (010000) > STATISTICS (010400) > Applied Statistics (010401)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > CRIMINOLOGY (160200)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety - Qld (CARRS-Q)
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Mathematical Sciences
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Current > Schools > School of Psychology & Counselling
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2014 Sage Publications Ltd.
Deposited On: 20 Mar 2014 00:38
Last Modified: 16 Sep 2015 21:14

Export: EndNote | Dublin Core | BibTeX

Repository Staff Only: item control page