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Thousands Of Motorists Set To Be Nicked By New Technology

By David Richards | Tuesday | 22/05/2007

Thousands of Australian motorists are set to be nicked by a new generation of speed cameras that operate over 5 lanes of traffic at once, are capable of identifying stolen cars as well as vehicles owned by disqualified drivers. It is also known that some Governments are also evaluating point to point traffic systems.

A new generation of speed camera's that work across multiple lanes at once and have the capacity to capture images at 1200 x 1600 resolution even in poor conditions are being sought by various Australian Governments in an effort to raise additional revenue, a Dutch executive of the company that makes the cameras has admitted.

It has also been revealed that a proposal is being floated in Australia to install point to point traffic systems on freeways and major roads. How this works is that at key locations, point-to-point measurement cameras are placed at different locations alongside the freeway. These cameras make photographs of each passing vehicle. A computer calculates the average speed that the vehicle has driven between the two points of measurement. The offenders automatically receive a speeding ticket in the post.

The news of tougher traffic management comes only days after the NSW Government admitted that over 10,000 motorists had been nicked driving through the new Lane Cove Tunnel in six weeks. The new cameras snap thousands of high-quality images and can monitor speeds in multiple lanes at once. They are also fitted with automatic number-plate recognition gear which alerts cops when a wanted car passes. They are also able to identify cars that are owned by drivers that have been disqualified.

Cameras from the same Dutch company Gatsometer are also are set to be installed on every road in the UK.  The company claims that the Gatso MCS multi-camera system is highly flexible and may be either gantry-mounted or installed at the roadside. It uses a combination of digital cameras to capture violations over up to five lanes of traffic, with digital colour images and optional video event recording if required. The Gatso MCS can capture front, rear or front-and-rear image sets of infringing vehicles. 

Another system from the same company, the Gatso DRCS has been developed exclusively for traffic use, in fixed, mobile or portable applications. It uses Gatso's Radar 24, a unique slotted wave antenna on a 24 GHz frequency, approved worldwide for enforcement applications. The system monitors both approaching and receding vehicles and also easily distinguishes between cars and trucks.



The ACT Government is already using Gastometer camera's following a multimillion dollar deal last year.

Stephen Gateley, Managing Director of Aspect Traffic, comments, "Canberra is a strategic win for Aspect Traffic, in keeping with our goal for Gatsometer to become the number one supplier of speed and red light enforcement systems in Australia." He added, "We believe that Gatsometer's policy of offering a full range of fixed and mobile enforcement systems, coupled with Aspect Traffic's experience in installation and systems integration, gave us the edge in this contract. We were able to meet and exceed all the enforcement needs of the ACT Government."

A Dutch offical of the Company told SHN that several Australian governments were "Impressed" with the Companies new technology as it allowed a "Big increase" in revenue raising by various State Governments.

In Holland road users have received 2,3 million fines because they drove too fast on stretches of highway where there is point-to-point measurement.

The Dutch Police and the Ministry of Justice introduced permanent speed enforcement on several places recently. They claim that "On highways without the point-to-point monitoring, ten to 15 percent of the drivers don't keep to the maximum speed limit, whereas on highways with point-to-point measurement, this percentage is only 2,5 percent'', explains a spokesman of the bureau of traffic enforcement. "In the beginning many drivers will get fines, but as soon as people are used to it, these percentages will decrease.''


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