License Plate Scanner Obsoletes Meter Maid

Bertel Schmitt
by Bertel Schmitt
license plate scanner obsoletes meter maid

License plate recognition, a technology that helps police track down stolen cars, that assists shopping malls in guiding customers to their cars, and that raises privacy concerns when doing so, will be used in Manly County, in Australia’s New South Wales, to combat illegal parking in local streets.

Manly Cove residents need a permit to park there. Police is trying to clamp down on the trading or giving away of parking permits.

So soon, specialized vehicles will roll down Manly Coves’ packed streets and process data of up to 2000 cars per hour, says the Manly Daily.

Manly Council general manager Henry Wong swears that no personal details will be exposed to exploitation through the scheme.

‘‘The only details we will have will be a registration number, which is no different to rangers walking down the street and writing down all the registrations now by hand,’’ he said. The council already uses numberplate recognition in its own carparks to detect any cars ‘‘recirculating’’ after leaving a space. The good old chalk mark has been made obsolete also.

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  • Straightsix Straightsix on Feb 01, 2011

    Washington, DC has had similar technology for a while as well. Their enforcement for time limits in residential areas is usually zone-wide. You can park for 2 hours (the limit without a residential permit) move your car 5 blocks and STILL get a parking ticket. DC has elevated parking enforcement to a very high level. I think it's about the only thing they are competent at.

  • Jerome10 Jerome10 on Feb 01, 2011

    If this hasn't made it to Chicago, I'm sure it has been ordered.... Interestingly though, the city tried to install plate readers on street sweepers, to automatically ticket those who didn't move their cars on sweep days. They said they eventually gave up because there was too much motion and they could not get the plates to read anything but fuzzy. So, how does this avoid the motion/bouncing problem of moving vehicles?

  • SpinnyD SpinnyD on Feb 01, 2011

    these have been used in Philadelphia for the parking system for a while now as anyone who has watched "Parking Wars" can attest. I saw them using these 2-3 years ago on that program, the meter checker just drove down the street while the system automatically checked all of the cars. Those with fines or warrants got booted, all of them.

  • Golden2husky Golden2husky on Feb 01, 2011

    These types of scanners have been on police cars for several years. Usually there are two, one on each side so the police can drive down a aisle of parked cars and look for whatever. Years ago when I was in the parking industry, the Holy Grail for revenue collection for parking facilites was the idea that plates could be scanned in and out, and the parking fee displayed. No more tampering and theft by the employees, which ran rampant at some garages. You would have a guy who never went on vacation because they had a carefully concocted ripoff scheme. Then one day he's out due to a medical emergency. Suddenly revenue would spike 20 percent. So there are legit uses for these things.