FOUR of the five automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) cameras purchased to improve public safety are actively operating around Fremantle.
The Gazette broke the news in July last year that the number-plate-capturing technology would be introduced to record every car that enters – and leaves – the port city.
The cameras work by scanning the number plates of all vehicles that pass by and a text message with the time, date, location and an image is sent to the Police Traffic Intelligence Unit to cross-check against a Vehicle of Interest register.
Records are stored for 30 days then deleted, with only WA Police able to access the data.
Cameras have been installed at the intersections of Queen Victoria Street and Parry Street, High Street and Parry Street, South Terrace and Suffolk Street, and Marine Terrace and Arundel Street, with a final camera set to monitor the intersection of Beach Street and Parry Street.
The five ANPR cameras and an extra 20 CCTV cameras were funded by the Federal Government through a $928,000 grant.
The cameras were recognised as priorities in the City of Fremantle’s five-year Community Safety and Crime Prevention Plan, which has been out for public consultation in recent weeks.
Almost 500 people took part in workshops, school visits and forums, highlighting issues such as petty theft and disengaged youth in the Fremantle CBD, antisocial behaviour in Beaconsfield, drug use in Hilton and stealing in South Fremantle.
The plan identifies hot-spot areas such as Queen Street, the north end of Market Street and Pioneer Park and the Quarry, Parry and Queen streets junction.
Among further recommendations in the plan are for the City to maintain its relationships with WA Police and government departments, supporting crime prevention programs such as Neighbourhood Watch and improving lighting.
Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt said the aim of the City was to create an environment in Fremantle where people felt safe, with public spaces designed to be actively used throughout the day and night that encouraged people to linger and interact.
“The City of Fremantle has made a big commitment towards community safety through initiatives like our expanded Community Safety Team and our actively monitored CCTV network,” he said.“But community safety and crime prevention are complex issues and many aspects are not under the control of local government, so it needs a collaborative effort from all tiers of government, local businesses and the community.”
The public submission period ends on Friday.