ALPR (Automatic License Plate Recognition) technology has been adapted to many functions since its first applications 30 years ago. Most of these functions improve the flow of traffic and improve safety, although the tools are increasingly used in other areas of business and life.
Some privacy advocates have opposed the use of LPR cameras as an unreasonable breach of privacy. Almost every government in the developed world has responded to these accusations by developing legislation to regulate the use of these cameras. It defines how operators can use the data generated by them and who can access it, how long they can keep it and how they should encrypt it. Europe’s GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) regulates the use of many types of personal data, including that from license plate readers. The vehicle, and not the personal data of its owner, is what the camera identifies.
This article will look at the many benefits of the technology. We will discuss traffic monitoring, speed control, toll collection, crime related vehicle identification and other related topics.
Mobile traffic monitoring
Police cars mixing with traffic have unique opportunities to observe driver behavior and other factors related to traffic flow and safety.
When equipped with an on-board LPR camera capable of reading the license plates of nearby vehicles and identifying the vehicles to which they are attached, they can:
- Identify speeders and other offenders
- Recognize stolen vehicles and those related to other crimes
- Identify cars known to have unpaid insurance
With the ability to quickly identify the vehicle owner, they can take appropriate action as soon as they detect a problem. The ALPR is a huge improvement over when they had to call a plate number to a central operator, who would look up the number and report it to the agent, often too late for him to take action. If it is appropriate to apprehend the offender on the spot, they will immediately know if the driver is known to be dangerous, and they can call for backup.
If the officer has to report the presence of a particular vehicle to other authorities, they immediately have all the information to make the report.
Adaptive Recognition’s MicroCAM RAPI mobile camera is the ideal tool for this application.
A threat to the safety of neighborhoods and roads – Speedsters and traffic light violators
Speeding and ignoring red lights are two of the most dangerous behaviors on the road.
In truth, speed is defined as driving significantly faster than the general traffic flow, even if the general flow is fifteen km / h above the arbitrary speed limit. Cars traveling faster or slower than traffic surprise other drivers, forcing them to make sudden decisions. Under the pressure to act quickly, they can make a decision that worsens the situation and sets off a chain of events leading to accidents.
Going through red lights is perhaps even more dangerous than speeding, as a resulting crash usually happens with two vehicles passing each other. And even if the two drivers manage to avoid each other, they may make sudden movements that lead to a “secondary” accident.
Anything we can do to deter speeding and red light violations is important to improving safety. Modern ALPR cameras can identify violators so that they can be apprehended, fined, or otherwise discouraged from continuing their dangerous habits.
The measurement of average speeds on a road segment is a significant improvement offered by Adaptive Recognition’s ANPR / ALPR portable speed and traffic application camera S1 from Adaptive Recognition. This feature detects drivers who slow down at known “speed traps” and then starts accelerating again when they think they are not being watched. This camera can identify speedsters up to 1 km (0.6 mi), and it can also identify red light violators, stolen vehicles, auto insurance fraudsters, and more.
High-speed automated toll collection
Before the arrival of the ALPR, collecting tolls was a slow and messy process.
When drivers had to stop or slow down to a few km / h to pay tolls, it disrupted traffic, caused accidents, created horrors on the freeways and frustration for everyone. When drivers suddenly need to slow down considerably, some will react faster than others. Inattentive drivers may need to brake hard at the last minute. These disturbances set up perfect accident scenarios.
When LPR cameras developed to the point of identifying vehicles up to 300 km / h and connected to automatic billing / payment systems, there was no need to slow down to pay tolls.
The image shows the newly constructed bridge (2019) over Roskilde Fjord in Denmark. This project is a perfect example of the traffic flow and safety enhancements offered by RAPI assisted enhancements.
The ALPR has eliminated the traffic disruption, delays and frustration associated with old-fashioned toll collection, including unsightly toll plazas and toll plazas.
Usual offender records follow them when they travel
People who drive a lot move quite often, even leaving the limits of their hometown. Whether they’re regular speedsters or violators of other safety rules, their records often looked blank in another city. Or at least that was the case until recently.
Adaptive Recognition’s Globessey Data Server (GDS) middleware changed all that. This application connects to LPR devices on the input side and international databases on the output side. Now police officers in a large city can access as much information as possible about a driver based in another city or country. Since this middleware can connect to databases of any size, the available storage is virtually unlimited.
Since drivers who regularly travel far are sometimes the worst offenders, road safety in every neighborhood is improved through the use of this connectivity.
ALPR cameras are central players in all of the neighborhood safety improvements we have discussed. Users in road safety organizations and many other businesses are finding new ways to use this technology every week to improve safety and efficiency.
Adaptive Recognition has been a leader in this field since 1991. To learn more about ways you can use LPR technology in your business or in another application, visit their website.
photo by Mads Thomsen from Pexels
EDITOR’S NOTE: This is a promoted post and should not be taken as editorial approval