$400K Halifax CCTV system sends hoons to court for doing burnouts and driving dangerously in the industrial area

Shannon VerhagenSouth Western Times
BTS senior technician Vian Komen, Bunbury MLA Don Punch and BGCCI CEO Mark Seaward are pleased the Halifax CCTV project has gone live.
Camera IconBTS senior technician Vian Komen, Bunbury MLA Don Punch and BGCCI CEO Mark Seaward are pleased the Halifax CCTV project has gone live. Credit: Shannon Verhagen

Four local hoons have had to front court after being caught in the act on Halifax’s new $400,000 CCTV system.

After a spate of burglaries in the industrial area, 22 two megapixel cameras went live in December, strategically positioned to capture all incoming and outgoing traffic.

And the footage is live-streamed to police 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Bunbury police officer in charge Senior Sergeant Andy Carson said it was an “excellent investigative tool”.

It’s a great bit of kit, the images are very clear and there’s a screen showing the images in the main office where my officers can see it.

Snr Sgt Andy Carson

“There’s been a number of times where vehicles have driven in late at night and they’re able to observe them and send a car out if needed.”

However, he said its “true value” would be realised in the coming months, as the number of commercial burglaries had dropped during the coronavirus pandemic while people were less mobile.

He said they had already started to see the number of commercial burglaries creep up around Bunbury, with two in Picton just this week.

“Halifax was a target area for some of our crooks pre-COVID,” Sen. Sgt Carson said.

“... Since COVID started, we’ve only had three burglaries in that area.”

“... As we come out of COVID we’ll start to see the system’s true value.”

While no thieves have been apprehended, the cameras have led to the arrest and prosecution of four hoons using the streets as burnout pads or for “antisocial” driving behaviours.

Industrial areas are notorious for hoons after hours.

Sen. Sgt Andy Carson

“They generally have wide roads, good roads and after hours are very quiet. But what they don’t realise is we’re watching them.

The people they put at most risk is themselves. But anybody could be driving around the corner, a security guard could be pulling up to do their checks and all of a sudden, what they thought was a vacant street is not, and they can lose control of their vehicle and tragedy can strike.

Sen. Sgt Andy Carson

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