Community NewsLatest News

Updated traffic cameras designed to integrate with existing cameras

A Dayton area community is upgrading its traffic camera system to help it connect to existing license plate reader (LPR) devices.

The cameras, which monitor traffic flow, traffic patterns and intersections, are simple, pan-tilt-zoom style cameras and not LPRs, according to Police Chief Craig Richardson.

MPD has had traffic cameras since the late 1990s, he said. The current generation of devices was installed around 2014, but the cameras have reached end-of-life and were scheduled to be replaced this year, Richardson said.

“They are not used for enforcement purposes,” he told this news outlet. “They don’t write red-light tickets or speeding tickets. They are used for monitoring for traffic problems.”

The department will use the Flock Safety Condor to replace its existing traffic cameras. Flock, although it is the same company that makes LPR cameras, has a traffic camera model, Richardson said.

The company says its Condor cameras allow law enforcement to “respond safely and increase case clearance with remote-controlled, live and recorded on-scene video” and provides “a comprehensive live view during critical incidents with remote PTZ (point-tilt-zoom) controls.”

The new device also will allow police to view live video from the cameras remotely rather than just in the police station, said city spokesman Aaron Vietor.

Moraine City Council voted unanimously Thursday night to approve a two-year contract for nine replacement cameras at a cost of $32,625 for this year, and $27,000 for next year, for a total cost of $59,625. The new cameras should be installed by April or May, city officials said.

Chief Richardson, in a March 14 Committee of the Whole meeting, said MPD uses its traffic cameras to help solve accidents after the fact, and that dispatchers can watch for backups, delays or issues with signals.

The Flock Safety Condor has all the same features as the city’s traffic cameras, but it also can integrate with its existing LPRs, Vietor said. When a vehicle is tagged by an LPR, it can relay a message to the new Condor traffic cameras, providing law enforcement with even more information, he said.

Richardson said that since LPRs were installed last May, the devices have helped MPD catch three murder suspects, four attempted murder suspects and dozens of other violent criminals.