Bayside uses latest technology to focus on hoons

Bayside Council has invested in state-of-the-art Licence Plate Recognition (LPR) technology to help curb car hoons disturbing the peace along the foreshore suburbs this summer.

It what is believed to be an Australian first for a council, Bayside staff have been working with technology innovators and the police to use the LPR software to capture anti-social behaviour in local streets and on the water.

The first static cameras with the ability to read and record the licence plate of a vehicle while taking a photo have now been installed in Vanston Parade and Ida Street, Sandringham.

"This area has been a hot-spot for the hoons, particularly late at night," Bayside mayor Bill Saravinovski said.

"Now we have a real chance of catching them and holding them to account," he said.

"Any illegal activity will now be recorded, the vehicle owner identified, and the video evidence supplied to local police, or Council will issue infringement fines."

The roll out of the cameras continues with Brighton-Le-Sands the next area to be targeted.

The technology being installed in Brighton-Le-Sands will monitor anti-social behaviour behaviour by car hoons and jet skis coming in too close to the shore.

And the cameras will be used to catch graffiti vandals defacing local businesses with graffiti.

The request for cameras at Vanston Parade was first raised by the former deputy mayor Councillor James Macdonald in March of this year.

At the time, Bayside had been trialling the Licence Plate Recognition technology over the summer to ensure a greater turnover of parking along the foreshore.

"We tested it over a six month period, including the summer, and found that it is extremely effective," Councillor Saravinovski said.

The new technology has also been given the tick of approval by the Parking Officers.

"We have seen a significant reduction in the number of incident reports from staff and complaints from the community," Councillor Sarvinovski said.

The cameras will allow residents to ring the police and provide details. Police will have access to these cameras and because they are LPR they can pick up the licence plate numbers and they will be able to issue infringements.

Councillor Macdonald said the new technology will be a game-changer in the battle against hooning and soon will be rolled out in Brighton-Le-Sands and other areas within Bayside council

Stage one of the plan will see the rollout of 12 multi-directional LPR cameras located on council assets in Bay Street and The Grand Parade.

The next step will see more than those two streets in Brighton-Le-Sands.

The council has identified up to 50 sites where the technology could be used.