The government signed a contract valued at over $5 million yesterday with Proficient Business Services for 507 closed-circuit television (CCTV) surveillance cameras, which will be strategically placed in areas known to be hotspots for crime.
Minister of National Security Marvin Dames said the cameras will greatly improve the police force’s crime-fighting capabilities.
“As always, the most appropriate course of action is to prevent crime,” he said.
“Research suggests that strategically placed cameras do have an impact on CCTV’s ability to reduce pre-meditative and property crime.
“However, where that fails, CCTV will aid in criminal investigations.”
He added, “When fully installed, of the grand total, 100 of the cameras will be equipped with license plate recognition capabilities, another 100 with facial recognition capabilities and another 120 with pan-tilt zone capabilities, which will be able to capture evidential information in real-time.
“CCTV will help law enforcement officials determine critical information from crime scenes including the exact time of the incidents, the exact location of the incident, the number of suspects, weapon types and suspect vehicle types.
“The intent of today’s undertaking adds to the arsenal of crime-fighting tools while heightening community confidence that perpetrators of crimes will be caught and dealt with to the full extent of the law.”
The contract signing brings the total number of CCTV cameras available to the Royal Bahamas Police Force to 750.
“As for the previous 243 cameras, you may recall that upon coming to office, 193 of the cameras, or almost 80 percent, were not working,” said Dames.
“Added to this, the system was plagued with bandwidth issues, thereby making their use ineffective. The bandwidth problems have been rectified and the system received necessary upgrades. To date, 200 or 82 percent of the existing cameras are now operational, while the other 43 are in the process of receiving the necessary upgrades.”