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How surveillance helps to keep our public spaces safe

Surveillance systems are crucial to enhancing safety in the public realm. Not only do they act as a crime deterrent, recordings are pivotal in aiding prosecutors and law enforcement identify, arrest and prosecute criminals.

Riverhorse Valley Business Estate Management Association (RHVBEMA) Precinct Manager, Bruce Macaulay says, “Before CCTV and other types of surveillance, law enforcement would rely solely on eyewitness accounts which weren’t always reliable.”

Part of the RHVBEMA’s mandate is to improve the precinct’s safety in a bid to enhance the quality of life for those who use the area and maintain confidence for those who’ve invested there. The MA’s proactive security approach includes partnering with the SAPS, other Riverhorse Valley security services providers and local community safety forums. The surveillance system comprises 13 infrared speed dome cameras covering 85% of the precinct and a centralised control room which is manned 24/7 by two controllers. The control room operates in tandem with the dedicated 24/7 armoured reaction vehicle which is permanently manned by two armed reaction officers and further adds to the overall safeguarding of the precinct with real time attendance to incidents.

The cameras have pan/tilt rotation/optical/digital zoom capabilities with the added benefit of seeing at night as they are infrared. The system also has the ability to store all recorded CCTV footage for a period of two weeks. In addition to crime prevention and detection, they also aid in fault reporting to the eThekwini Municipality, attendance to vehicle accidents, and in the past have also served to record incidents of strike and protest action, as well as land invasion.

“Our surveillance system is critical for crime prevention and keeping the area safe so that businesses, property owners and workers can continue to enjoy the benefits of this important commercial and industrial node. This underpins the Management Association’s highest mandate: the protection and enhancement of its members’ property values” concludes Macaulay.

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