Slideshow: FENLAND boosts CCTV and some cameras may even be hung from a tree
PUBLISHED: 17:08 06 August 2008 | UPDATED: 08:35 02 June 2010
EXCLUSIVE By TOM JACKSON MOBILE CCTV cameras will be introduced to Fenland by the end of the year making is possible to monitor more than 90 per cent of the district. The investment comes after a Fenland police inspector managed to acquire a £135,000 gra
By TOM JACKSON
MOBILE CCTV cameras will be introduced to Fenland by the end of the year making is possible to monitor more than 90 per cent of the district.
The investment comes after a Fenland police inspector managed to acquire a £135,000 grant for a new CCTV system.
Three of the state-of-the-art cameras will be rolled out by the end of October.
They can be placed anywhere - even hanging off tree branches - to survey a specific area for a set time.
A state-of-the-art digital recording system has also been installed at the control tower in Wisbech, replacing the outdated tape system.
Fenland's CCTV is operated by Fenland District Council under its Streetsafe banner, which aims to create a clean and safe environment for residents.
Mick Napier, Streetsafe Fenland CCTV manager, said: "About 90 per cent of Fenland will be reached by the new cameras, but I think that is a conservative estimate - I think we will be closer to 98 or even 99 per cent."
Insp Robin Sissons - formerly the inspector of March but now of Wisbech - secured the £135,000 funding for the new system in March this year.
Mr Napier said: "It was way beyond our expectations. We then started to do some research and found that if we use a microwave wireless system we can cover a 7km radius of each of the four Fenland towns."
The new cameras will run alongside the 56-strong fleet of secure CCTV cameras currently set up in Fenland's four towns.
They will connect to the CCTV tower in Wisbech via the police's four radio masts in March, Wisbech, Whittlesey and Chatteris.
Mr Napier said: "The delay from the camera to the control tower will be hundredths of a millisecond. It is very minute."
Only three will be bought at first, but there is space to have up to 40 mobile cameras operating at one time across Fenland.
However, Mr Napier said: "I am very keen to get a robust but basic system running that we can then expand on.
"I also do not think we will ever need 40 cameras, but the option will always be there."
Where the three cameras will be distributed will be decided by a sub-committee of the Neighbourhood Safety Management Board - made up of agencies such as police, the fire service, the ambulance service and councils. They will, however, be relocated to monitor major incidents if Fenland District Council or police find it necessary.
Councillor Ken Mayor, the council's portfolio holder for safer and stronger communities, which includes CCTV, said: "We are delighted that this state-of-the-art system will be operating within the next couple of months. It is a big improvement on the fixed cameras that only cover the towns.
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