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Traffic camera monitoring over GPRS for Newcastle

Qeeps : 14 May, 2008  (Application Story)
Newcastle city council attains direct real-time access to live traffic surveillance cameras without the need for routing through control rooms
Qeeps has announced Newcastle City Council as its first UK customer to deploy the Qeeps service as part of their city wide traffic management system in order to monitor live traffic cameras via authorised GPRS enabled mobile phones.

The system connects to 60 cameras around the city, monitoring key trunk roads and intersections and integrates seamlessly with the existing Traffic Control Centre. However, when a problem occurs during out of hours operations, Qeeps helps the council maintain vital information flow between all the relevant parties, allowing real time views from traffic cameras to be accessed by key members of the planning and transportation department.

"The Qeeps service has been very effective at maximising the potential of the system we already have in place." explains Peter Wightman, Group Manager Traffic and Transport department at Newcastle City Council.

Through Qeeps, Wightman and his team are able to view live footage from any camera throughout the city all delivered in real time without the need for someone in the control room. This is especially useful at weekends and evenings and allows a high degree of responsiveness to any traffic incident throughout the city. "Qeeps is powerful and flexible enough to offer the same functions as if the operator was in the control room." Wightman adds.

Andy Graham, a Company Director at Barrier Surveillance, the accredited Installer that carried out the implementation of the Qeeps system comments, "Installing and configuring Qeeps to work with the existing CCTV was very straightforward. There was no impact to services during installation, which took very little time, and the department were able to connect to Qeeps using their mobile phones immediately."

The success of the system has prompted interest from additional communities within the Newcastle area with a need for mobile access to video from traffic cameras. Over the next year, it is planned that the system be introduced to other groups including local bus companies, parking enforcement officers and the Police.

Stewart McCone, Technical Director, Vemotion Interactive Limited - parent company of Qeeps adds, "The ability to quickly access video footage from cameras anywhere across the city without the need of a central control room is one of the unique features that makes Qeeps so compelling for local authorities."

"In addition, the seamless integration between our technology and the widest range of market leading CCTV equipment reduces implementation time and costs and enables the flexibility that modern councils need in managing CCTV assets across multiple departments and diverse locations." McCone adds.

McCone believes that the success of the implementation at Newcastle City Council will serve as a template for a number of other local government pilots that are currently underway using Qeeps, "Newcastle City Council have experienced real benefits through deploying Qeeps" adds McCone, "and as the system expands to other interested parties throughout the city, the potential benefits increase as more areas are covered and more users are able to help deliver better services through mobile access to CCTV." He concludes.

Qeeps (pronounced keeps) is a hosted service allowing users to connect remotely to any Digital Video Recorder (DVR) via IP to receive both real-time and recorded video footage on any mobile device. The service is typically used in conjunction with CCTV cameras but any connected source can be viewed using Qeeps. The system was created by UK pioneers Vemotion Interactive Limited after a several years of technical development to create software interfaces for all the major DVR manufacturers. This allows the service to connect remotely and stream video footage without the need for additional onsite equipment. Qeeps delivers full colour video and optional audio to mobile phones or similar hand held wireless device using a specially patented version of the H.264 encoding standard for low bandwidth devices.
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