New cameras to help detect crime

2019-04-23 06:00

Woodstock could soon contribute to the quick recovery of stolen vehicles and the early detection of vehicles involved in criminal activities as the City of Cape Town plans to introduce the License Plate Recognition (LPR) camera technology project.

The project will give direct alerts to relevant enforcement agencies and will allow these agencies to react in real time when suspicious vehicles enter the area.

“Swift reaction to the LRP network alerts has led to many arrests of crowbar gangs, business robbers and the recovery of vehicles that have been involved in hijackings in other parts of the Metro. The cameras can also be used retrospectively for evidence in criminal cases,” ward 115 councillor, Dave Bryant says.

Although there are similar projects across the City, this is the first to be funded by a councillor’s ward allocation budget.

Bryant further says that existing projects are funded by either residents or private businesses. “It is important to recognise that many Woodstock residents would not have access to an LRP system without some assistance from City budget,” he says.

He says that many residents had raised crime concerns around the area and this project was one of the ways the City could assist in an effective and measurable way.

The total cost of this project is estimated to be R400 000 and if found to be successful, Bryant says more cameras could be set up from future ward allocation funds.

“The budget will become available from July this year from which time the network can be installed. I am in meetings with the relevant officials to discuss placement of the cameras and coordination within the existing networks,” he says.

If rolled out successfully, he said the project will improve the overall quality of life for residents by making the area safer.

“This could spur on increased investment in the area and in turn create jobs for those who need it the most,” he says.

While the cameras will be installed at crime hotspots, Bryant said the exact spots are still to be finalised.

The system will be integrated with the existing network already installed by the Woodstock Improvement District.

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