– CCTV pilot project focuses on Surrey crime hot spot

ED. Cameras do not prevent crime. It would be far more effective and less expense to hire security guards to patrol the stations and parking lots. What’s wrong with TransLink management?!

The Province, Vancouver, BC

By Kent Spencer

New closed-circuit television cameras at Scott Road SkyTrain station parking lot are watching over one of Surrey’s hot spots for crime.

The city’s crime-reduction manager, Colleen Kerr, hopes the 12 cameras, which were installed this summer and provide blanket coverage of the lot, will ultimately decrease auto thefts. (ED. Rather than hope something works, let’s implement a proven system to reduce crime).

“We anticipate a reduced level of fear by transit users,” said Kerr on Wednesday. “The cameras will give us the best possible evidence.” (ED. Cameras do provide evidence after the crime has been committed, they will do little to actually prevent crime however.)

The lot, which has room for 1,532 vehicles, averages six vehicle thefts and 12 break-ins monthly. It is one of Surrey’s 10 worst spots for crime.

The $330,000, one-year pilot project is being funded by provincial taxpayers and has been approved by the provincial privacy commissioner.

It will be studied by SFU to find out if crime is reduced. (ED. This research is totally unnecessary. There is plenty of research now available showing how cameras alone do not prevent crime.)

Dr. Martin Andresen of the SFU school of criminology said studies in the U.K. show closed-circuit technology works well in parking lots. (ED. Could TransLink or the SFU provide proof of this statement?)

“We’ll be studying how safe people feel they are and how safe they feel their property is,” he said. (ED. I expect real results.)

Signs advertise the cameras’ presence. The CCTV images can be monitored live and are digitally recorded for evidence.

The records are kept a maximum of 21 days and are available only at the request of police.

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