ANPR Cameras to be recommended by County Council

Jun 16, 2012 by Warren

Police Car - Photo: John Kilpatrick

As crime continues to fall in Staffordshire, the county council and police plan to extend their work to keep the area one of the safest in the country.

Following success in other parts of the country, high-tech cameras aimed at preventing travelling crime and keeping criminals out of the county are set to go up on main roads across Staffordshire.

At its next Cabinet meeting on 20th June, Staffordshire County Council will be recommended to jointly fund the installation of Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) technology across the county.

The cameras detect number plates and send information to a control centre where it is analysed to identify whether vehicles need to be stopped by the police. ANPR has proved an effective way of dealing with motorists who do not tax or insure their vehicles as well as people who travel into the county to commit crime.

Overall crime across the county fell by 5,000 offences in the last 12 months, a drop of almost seven percent. But recent intelligence reports have shown that cross border criminals who use main roads to come into Staffordshire commit a significant amount of crime, in particular more serious offences such as burglary and vehicle crime.

A combination of 13 fixed camera sites and eight mobile ANPR units would act as a major deterrent to criminals, in addition to helping track and catch offenders.

Under the proposals, the County Council would provide a one-off payment of £199,000 to fund the technology.

Robbie Marshall, Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Infrastructure, said:

“If approved, these proposals would strengthen our partnership with the police to make Staffordshire even safer.

“It’s a message to the anti social and criminals that we are on to them, whether they are trying to get away without a tax disc or are intent on coming here to cause trouble.

“ANPR technology is a proven tool for combating serious crime by catching criminals on the move.

“It is equally effective for stopping car tax and insurance dodgers whose low level crimes heap additional costs on the honest, law abiding motorist.

“Although crime is falling in Staffordshire we are certainly not complacent.

“This is one of a number of measures we will be introducing with partners including the police to reduce crime and fear of crime, so that people in Staffordshire can live safely.”

Chief Superintendent Jon Drake, County Policing Commander, said:

“This initiative will continue to push our message to criminals; they are not welcome in the county.

“This technology, combined with an intelligence-led approach, will help us stop many criminals from targeting the county and allow us to track and catch those who do. Our latest figures show crime in the county is falling but we are committed to working with our partners to further cut crime.”

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