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Monday, October 13, 2014

Dubai’s smart police cars have 12 eyes on violators

Shaikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, shakes hands with a robot after inaugurating the Gitex Technology Week at Dubai World Trade Centre on Sunday. — Wam

Introducing a new fleet of Smart Patrol cars, Dubai Police will soon have 12 cameras on each of its patrol cars for better surveillance and monitoring. Each smart patrol car will be mounted with intelligent light bars featuring automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) and 360-degree video recording.

The cameras will monitor Dubai’s roads in real time and broadcast live video to Dubai Police’s control room. Using a network of police cars, the technology makes it easier to monitor and detect any violations.

“These cars are already in production and eventually the aspiration is to transform the entire fleet with intelligent light bars. The first generation of these cars could only monitor one lane. The latest technology allows all lanes to be monitored at the same time,” explained Russel Hammad, CEO of Zenith Security Systems.

If a wanted car is spotted on Dubai’s roads, the police officer on patrol receives a notification, informing him to take action. Eight cameras on the light bar allow automatic number plate recognition — a technology which allows police to flag vehicles with a history of violations. Four additional cameras provide a 360-degree view around the patrol car.

“A 360 (degree) view around the car can capture and detect violations. This information is relayed in real time to the police control centre. The Dubai Police is very innovative and cutting-edge in its approach to use technology. This is a world first technology and the Dubai Police is the first to implement the intelligent light bar,” said Hammad.

A dedicated speeding camera will also help record violations while the police patrol is on the move. Speeding fines will be issued in near real time with offenders receiving SMS notifications within five to 10 minutes of the speeding offence.

Speaking with Khaleej Times, Ramiz Yusuf, head of Maintenance for Satellite Services at the Dubai Police, said: “We do not have to print a fine anymore. The fine can be issued immediately for any violation recorded on the camera.”