Thursday, August 8, 2013

One big eye scans traffic, offenders

BANGALORE: The next time you try to jump that red signal or ride on a pavement, after not seeing any traffic cop in the vicinity, think again. For there's a hawk eye on city streets.

In a few months, Bangalore city traffic police will be able to watch at least 275 traffic junctions in the city and even book cases from one control room. It doesn't end there. With a huge video wall at the control room and high-end cameras on the roads, they can even zoom in on the offender's face. The traffic management centre (TMC) being set up will take enforcement to a new level altogether.

How does the centre work? Cameras placed across the city will beam live images to the TV wall of the TMC. Around 40 cops will analyze this data real time. If there is a traffic jam, the TMC will be able to guide officers on the ground to divert vehicles . It will also coordinate during emergencies, like convoy movement. Its primary job will be to book offenders.

New home:

After operating from the terrace of the Ashok Nagar police station for many years, the personnel will shift to their hi-tech hub on Infantry Road. Currently there are digital cameras at 175 junctions. Another 100 will be added soon. Besides, cops on the field are equipped with 300 digital cameras to upload pictures. A new system will ensure images by cops on the field are sent directly to the control room. So will this change the game? "First, it provides more space for traffic operations to take place. The new centre is equipped with a huge video wal. We can monitor the entire traffic or project one junction big on screen," said B Dayananda, Addl CP (traffic). His predecessor, MA Saleem, inwhose tenure the development of the centre started, says, "It's not limited to traffic enforcement. An officer here can manage traffic in the city," he said.

Bigger picture:

The TMC will play a huge role in planning infrastructure development, says Ashwin Mahesh, member of the steering committee on traffic police. "We'll chalk out the next master plan for the city and data stored will create a vision for development," he said.