police action in relation to motoring offences may take the form of a verbal caution, a letter of caution or reporting the driver for court action. a survey among 2801 drivers, in 1976, provided data on the extent to which drivers had encountered police action, the form which this took and the effects that it had had subsequently on these drivers. thirty-nine per cent of drivers said that they had been spoken to by a police officer about a possible offence and, of these, 25 per cent had been spoken to more than once in the previous 2 1/2 years. in most cases, the police officer spoke to them about only one offence, the most common being speeding. in 44 per cent of cases the officer gave just a verbal warning, in 4 per cent a warning letter was sent and in 38 per cent of cases court action followed. in 61 per cent of cases, drivers reported that they took more care subsequently. warnings appeared to be as effective in this respect as court actions for some driving offences, but for vehicle offences court action appears more effective.(a)

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