September 6, 2006 -- Croydon, UK - Scottish local authority East Renfrewshire is using the latest geographic information technology to help reduce crime and anti-social behaviour as part of a groundbreaking community safety project. The Council, which is based to the south of Glasgow, is using a GGP Geographical Information System (GIS) within the Councils CCTV control centre. Operators live monitor incidents and provide emergency services at the scene with additional intelligence. GGP’s GIS is also used to evaluate and analyse incidents of crime or anti-social behaviour (ASB) to improve future performance, prevention and detection.
GGP is seen as an essential information management tool for council’s partnerships safe communities action plan All Together Safely’. The Council manages 120 CCTV cameras at known crime hotspots, public spaces and open ground. CCTV Operators monitor the camera outputs 24 hours a day 7 days a week in order to detect, deter and prevent incidents of crime or ASB. The control room has a direct link to the Police control centre enabling operators to request a Police response, update the emergency services as the incident progresses and provide additional intelligence and support to officers on the ground.
GGP is used to plot the exact location of each camera and integrate this information with other key Council datasets, including Ordnance Survey mapping, aerial photography and the Council’s street and property gazetteers. When an incident is detected, GGP pinpoints the exact location or address of the incident. Operators can then guide the emergency services to the scene using street mapping and or local landmarks and identify other cameras close to the scene in order to monitor the incident.
“GGP GIS supports our CCTV Operators enabling them to respond quickly and with increased intelligence to any incident or suspected criminal activity,” said Gordon Turner, CCTV and Facilities Manager. “We can liase with the emergency services providing up to the minute, accurate descriptions of the scene and those associated with it.”
GGP is also used as a tool to record incidents, evaluate each response and plan future deployment of resources. The location, type and timing of an incident are recorded using GGP, enabling the Council to see patterns of offences and target their resources accordingly. A pilot project with the Fire Service is using GGP to map suspected criminal events, recording information such as the time of day, type of incident and the cost of responding to the incident in order to reduce the number of unnecessary call outs.
“GGP GIS enables us to easily identify patterns of offending behaviour,” said Paul Landman, Information Development Officer. “This information means we can target our resources where and when they are needed. With this increased intelligence we may also be able to identify remedial actions to reduce the risk of future offences.”