8/23/2005New Cameras Issue Speeding Tickets From the Road
Hidden Botts dots camera to spy on traffic and issue speeding tickets from the road itself.
Nearly invisible speed cameras mounted in the pavement will soon begin issuing speeding tickets in Malaysia. Officials there have announced plans to install a relatively new speed camera technology placed in the raised reflective pavement markers known as Bott's Dots or cat's eyes.
A pair of the "Intelligent Studs" sit in between lanes raised just 4mm from the ground, virtually indistinguishable from other lane markers in the road. One stud measures speed and another houses an infrared camera that photographs license plates at speeds up to 150 MPH. Together they can also be used to track the location and times of all passing vehicles through Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) software. Each device includes an automatic self-cleaning system to remove dirt and road grime regularly.
Malaysia already allows anyone with a cameraphone or other digital camera to issue speeding tickets to strangers, friends and enemies by uploading a picture to a police website. Yesterday, officials announced the first forty tickets had been issued under the new program.
A limited version of Bott's dots technology designed to illuminate foggy roads has been tested in Scotland and New Zealand. Trials of in-road camera systems have also been made, but the underground fiber optic cabling required to connect the devices with a central processing unit proved far more expensive than conventional speed camera units. The latest road marker cameras manufactured by Astucia Traffic Management Systems now use wireless technology (GPRS) to link the dots together, making the devices economically attractive to governments looking to issue freeway speeding citations.