Paying cops costs a lot of paper money to cash-strapped cities, but officials in Bangalore, India think they've found a cheaper alternative.
Officials there have set up cardboard cops at busy intersections in hopes drivers will see them, think they are real and slow down to avoid a ticket, msnNOW.com reported.
The idea was done out of financial necessity: Sources say Bangalore, a city of more than 8 million people, has only 3,000 traffic cops and needs double that, according to OneIndia.In.
Bangalore police commissioner MA Saleem is optimistic that the paperbacked police are a good way of reducing speeding and preventing accidents.
"Drivers in Indian cities violate traffic rules when there are no cops around - they jump traffic lights and go the wrong way on one-way streets," he said, according to ABC.net.au. "These cut-out cops are very effective and they can be on the job seven days a week."
So far, Saleem is happy with the results, even though one of the first three cardboard cops has already been stolen.
However, the pre-fabricated policemen do seem to be fooling some drivers, including one who reportedly admitting slowing down when he saw one of the cardboard cops, AFP reported.
"Two or three times we thought it was a real policeman standing there and we slowed down," he said.
Cardboard cops have been used in other cities previously, including a few towns in the Czech Republic, which found success using life-sized cardboards of female police officers in miniskirts.
But those were also popular with thieves.