NY’s Rotterdam police adopts vehicle recognition technology


Delaware-based developer of vehicle recognition systems, Rekor Systems Inc has announced that the Rotterdam Police Department in New York State has entered into a subscription agreement to use its Watchman software.

Rotterdam PD has placed an initial order of five licenses for the Watchman software to be installed on its existing traffic and surveillance cameras, enabling them to serve as powerful vehicle recognition systems. Based on Rekor’s OpenALPR software, the Watchman system eliminates the need for two separate cameras, one for license plate reading functionality, one for general monitoring and recording, as the system can be used to collect license plate data and information such as the make, model, and color of a vehicle using the same camera that provides surveillance monitoring. The results are displayed on a web-based interface that can be accessed from anywhere.

Watchman captures critical vehicle information from a video stream at high rates of speed, and at extreme angles of view with high levels of accuracy. Law enforcement authorities receive invaluable data to aid official investigations, with live alerts using ‘hot lists’ of known offenders. As a part of its subscription, and at no additional cost, the Rotterdam Police Department will be joining the Rekor Public Safety Network (RPSN). Any state or local law enforcement agency participating in the RPSN will be able to access real-time data from any part of the network at no cost. The company is initially launching the network by aggregating vehicle data from customers in over 30 states across the USA. With thousands of automatic license plate reading cameras currently in service that capture approximately 30 million plate reads per week, the network is expected to be live by the first quarter of 2020.

“We are pleased our subscription will allow us to integrate cutting-edge technologies into our department, as ensuring the safety of the public remains our top priority,” said Jeffrey Collins, Lieutenant of the Rotterdam Police Department. “Having the opportunity to join our law enforcement partners in the Rekor Public Safety Network expands our ability to prevent and solve crime. In searching for an advanced vehicle recognition solution, we chose to be a part of a law enforcement network that exists purely to prevent and solve crimes.”

Rod Hillman, Rekor’s COO, said, “By deploying our vehicle recognition software within their existing camera infrastructure, our customers can markedly enhance the functionality of the system without sacrificing any of its traffic or surveillance functionality or the need to purchase new, expensive hardware.”

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Adam joined the company in 1994, and has been News Editor of TTT since 2009. In his other role as Circulation Manager, he helped create the original Traffic Technology International distribution list 23 years ago, and has been working on it ever since. Outside of work, he is a keen fisherman, runs a drumming band, and plays an ancient version of cricket.