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Cities Wise Up to PSIM

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Simon Hersom
Simon Hersom  
12/10/2012 5:32:24 PM
User Rank Urban Legend
Re: Their claims are supported by research.
Indeed.  Google maps tells you there's a problem but seeing it for real gives you the scale.  

Jeremy.Johnson
Jeremy.Johnson  
12/10/2012 5:05:21 PM
User Rank City Slicker
Re: Their claims are supported by research.
This is a pretty nice traffic monitoring setup. If I lived there, I would certainly make practical use of these.

Mary Jander
Mary Jander  
12/10/2012 9:59:01 AM
User Rank Staff
Re: Their claims are supported by research.
Not sure whether CCTV privacy laws have even been extended beyond simple warning signs that you're being watched. Kind of like "this conversation may be recorded for training purposes."

Simon Hersom
Simon Hersom  
12/8/2012 5:51:09 PM
User Rank Urban Legend
Re: Their claims are supported by research.
If you take a look at this then it should show the CCTV traffic cameras in and around London.  The images refresh every few minutes so you can't watch in real time but you can easily check the motorways for problems before you set out.  In fact there's an app which sends the same images to your phone.

These cameras are a tiny proportion of the CCTV network however.

Jeremy.Johnson
Jeremy.Johnson  
12/7/2012 6:49:54 PM
User Rank City Slicker
Re: Their claims are supported by research.
ikr. Fully complicated. I mean... if I am caught pulling my car over to help someone push a car out of traffic, that's one thing, and well met! Thought I can't help but wonder, if it's 2am, I'm in a strange city, in a dangerous neighborhood, and I slowly blow through a red light, would I be prosecuted for running the red light when there's clearly no one else around and I was captured on CCTV? Tricky.

As the local volunteer coordinator for the Juneau CERT team, there's loads of liability and technical concerns for how best we can help under the circumstance of a "real" emergency. Things as simple as, "How do we get activated to respond to assist first responders?" There are complex things such as, "If I help someone, then what protections do I have under the good samaritan laws?"

All kinds of valid concerns with a volunteer group that is being put into a place where people are... exposed, at risk, vulnerable.

I look forward to seeing how the CCTV implementations here in the states will proceed.

Nicole Ferraro
Nicole Ferraro  
12/7/2012 6:36:35 PM
User Rank Staff
Re: Their claims are supported by research.
@Jeremy, re: "Would such a civil group, under the jurisdiction of the Fire Services, be able to review these CCTV feeds to get a view of the troubles that could be addressed first in their own CCTV captured neighborhood?" 

Interesting question, Jeremy. I think individual cities are going to need to establish different sets of regulations around the use (and abuse) of CCTVs. The scenario you outline suggests to me that CERT members should be able to access the footage, but I think that limitations would need to be clearly spelled out.

I feel all of this technology intended to secure the public needs to come along with regulations and software that secure the tech itself. In short, complicated!

Jeremy.Johnson
Jeremy.Johnson  
12/7/2012 5:22:45 PM
User Rank City Slicker
Re: Their claims are supported by research.
Sorry that My scenario isn't clear.


What I'm really asking is whether or not citizens are evern qualified to have access to the CCTV. Closed Circuit usually implies that the information isn't publicly available; however, I would suggest that a gated community has a CCTV camera on the gate, and are able to view "Channel 1" to see who is at the gate.

Do City planners with CCTV have them reserved for city employees, or are citizens able to access the CCTV through some mechanism?

 

C.E.R.T. Community Emergency Response Team (citizencorps.com/cert) is a Citizen-driven initiative that is usually sponsored by the Fire Department, or Emergency Planning team. The CERT people are _not_ employed by the city, but would have justifiable reasons to access the CCTV, under the proper circumstance.

The scenario that I built was specifically meant to show a _citizen_ needing access to CCTV for the betterment of the community, instead of an employee of the municipality.

 

Very interesting, honestly. I've been interested in CCTV, since I found out that London has such an extensive CCTV system years ago. I find such initiatives quite intriguing, as I don't mind letting go of my "public" privacy, I have no problem with it.

Mary Jander
Mary Jander  
12/7/2012 4:45:39 PM
User Rank Staff
Re: Their claims are supported by research.
Hi Jeremy. I can't answer for Baltimore, obviously, but the publications about this implementation say it was meant to tie in various government agencies, not just a couple of city departments. Whether that has actually been implemented, I don't know. I will try to find out though.

I am not really following the scenaio you describe. It seems as though city employees might be able to use the CCTV system to look into their own interests. Is that right?

Privacy continues to be an issue for most all surveillance apps. But the tradeoff is, of course, that you can't really protect a population unless you can see what's going on.

 

Jeremy.Johnson
Jeremy.Johnson  
12/7/2012 3:57:43 PM
User Rank City Slicker
Their claims are supported by research.
I'd like to see numbers for how EMS responses improved from say... the previous decades averages, in direct comparrison to the first year after implementation, not related to the race event, just to see if the new system is improving EMS responses to all types of Emergency, or just specific types (fire, traffic-related, et cetera.)

Are these CCTV cameras only available to city employees, a specific branch, such as the Emergency Planning group, or available to an local, state, or federal agency. Further, if the CCTV is a public asset, are there plans on ever making the CCTV public?

I know that the #1 concern I hear about CCTV for cities is privacy, and the #1 "problem solved" is said to be crime, but I would like to know if that is just rhetoric and anecdote, or if these claims are based on something factual.

 

Here's a scenario:

Flood happens in a population 500k city with CCTV. EMS is tied up with critical concerns and issues. Let's say a few small building fires, and a ruptured gas main, to get as many EMS teams involved as possible.

The local CERT members, after making sure that their own homes and family are safe, are concerned about their neighborhood. While it is a community/civil group, most CERT programs are under the jurisdiction of local Fire Department(s).

Would such a civil group, under the jurisdiction of the Fire Services, be able to review these CCTV feeds to get a view of the troubles that could be addressed first in their own CCTV captured neighborhood?

 

I don't mean to generate a flood of scenario definitions, but this one is a pretty straight forward, justifiable opportunity for a Civilian group to have a "real" need to review the CCTV feeds, if they are active and stable.

If the above scenario is invalid, then is there any scenario where public access to the CCTV would be considered?

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