For traffic to move safely, it must flow smoothly. For traffic to flow smoothly, drivers must be consistent in their behavior. Driving faster or slower than the general traffic flow is dangerous. Weaving in and out of traffic with abrupt lane changes is dangerous. Running red lights is dangerous. We must eliminate these behaviors as much as possible.
Traffic rules are designed to promote the smooth flow necessary for traffic safety. When everyone follows the rules, traffic flows smoothly and safely.
Traffic control is how we strive to have everyone follow the rules. We control traffic by:
1. Measuring speed
2. Identifying and penalizing other violations such as red-light jumping
3. Maintaining an international database that identifies regular troublemakers even when they are away from their home area.
No matter where we go, identifying and penalizing violators is an unpleasant but necessary part of traffic control. So, how do we implement it? That’s where ALPR cameras come into the picture. This article will discuss how they assist traffic control and what role Adaptive Recognition, a leading producer of some of the most advanced ALPR cameras in the industry, plays in achieving that.
Mobile Patrol Units See More Than Fixed ALPR Cameras Do
A very effective traffic control method is installing special ALPR cameras, suitable for in- or on-vehicle mounting. Such a camera is Adaptive Recognition’s MicroCam. This sophisticated ALPR system can measure another vehicle’s speed while both vehicles are moving. It can also be set up to identify a vehicle and its owner from the license plate number and automatically search for stolen and other wanted vehicles.
If the appropriate action when they identify a violator is to make them stop, the officer can know in advance if the driver is likely to be dangerous. If a report to other authorities is the best response to a situation, the officer has all the necessary information to take appropriate actions.
ALPR represents a huge improvement compared to the days when an officer had to call a plate number into an operator who looked it up in a list or database and reported back with the information. Often that exchange could take a minute or much more, depending on how busy the operator was. By the time the officer had the information, the opportunity for leaping into action could be lost.
That’s why mobile police units carrying a MicroCAM ALPR camera is an excellent method for traffic control – as well as a clever way to reduce the work of officers and operators.
How About the Guy Who Knows and Slows for Speed Traps?
Drivers who use the same road often get to know where fixed speed traps are likely to be. They slow down in those areas, then floor it again once the speed trap is out of sight.
An effective strategy to thwart this behavior is measuring average speed over a highway segment, using a portable ALPR camera like Adaptive Recognition’s S1 speed and traffic enforcement camera. One camera identifies each vehicle and the time it entered the examined segment. Another camera notes the same vehicle’s time leaving the segment and calculates its average speed.
Since the S1 camera is easily portable, drivers never know where it will exactly be. Not only that, but this camera can measure speed from as far away as 600m and can be set up in less than two minutes.
In addition to the unique average speed function, the S1 camera also identifies red-light violators. Red-light violations cause some of the most serious accidents since vehicles crash into each other at a right angle, increasing the impact. S1 cameras can prevent such accidents from occurring.
One more bonus of the S1 camera is the unauthorized list feature, which identifies vehicles with unpaid insurance or other reasons for being wanted.
Violators Travel – and Disrupt Traffic Wherever They Go!
ALPR cameras are great tools for traffic control in a particular area, and a local ALPR database can identify drivers who regularly break the rules and disrupt traffic.
People who drive a lot usually travel long distances, so they’re often far from home, where the usual identification methods wouldn’t recognize them. Frequent drivers also often tend to drive faster and more impatiently than others.
An important part of traffic control is identifying repeat violators before they cause an accident. It’s crucial to recognize traveling violators, as well as those wanted in their local area. And identification of these drivers wherever they go requires a massive database.
GDS – short for Globessey Data Server – an ALPR-based middleware application developed by Adaptive Recognition is a system that stores data in and extracts them from the databases connected to it. Since its storage capacity is limited only by those linked databases, its storage is virtually limitless.
When authorities connect to this ALPR-based system, they can easily identify and assess the appropriate penalty to repeat violators if they make trouble – even if they are caught in another country. For example, a habitual speedster from Munich who turns up in Zurich may be in the Bavarian or Federal German police database, but Swiss authorities can still access those databases via GDS and, thus, can take the necessary actions.
Seeing the crucial role ALPR has in traffic control, it’s obvious how important the effective control of traffic is in promoting safe travel. And there are no signs that ALPR technology will slow down in the future, resulting in even safer roads.
As a long-time leader in the development of ALPR cameras, Adaptive Recognition is the place to go to solve your traffic control need, whether it’s speed and traffic enforcement or “just” traffic monitoring. Check out their website, and contact them to discuss your solution.
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