ARANDIS - High-resolution surveillance cameras will help road users to abide by the rules of the road or face the consequences of the law.
This means there is no more getting away with reckless driving or disregarding road regulations for drivers between Usakos and Swakopmund.
The specific stretch of the road is now beaming with 15 high-tech intelligent transport system (ITS) cameras that will be monitoring the behaviour of road users around the clock.
This idea is part of the infant phase of the Arandis Emergency Response and Traffic Management Centre, which will be officially launched today just outside Arandis.
The state of the art, multi million-dollar facility, which is in its infancy stage, is being carried out by the Arandis Town Council, the Erongo Regional Council and the National Road Safety Council (NRSC) and is the first of its kind for Namibia.
Executive secretary of the NRSC, Eugene Tendekule, during the media tour on Thursday, explained that 15 cameras are placed along the B2 stretch and are connected to the operation room just outside Arandis.
“The cameras can identify passing vehicles and their speed. If the speed is too high, a personalised message will be displayed on the signboard to warn the drivers. This can include the registration number of the vehicle also being displayed. We have people monitoring these cameras in the operating room, 24 -hours,” he explained.
He added that the NRSC decided to partner with Arandis on the project as it was ready and had already made land available for the project, but did not have jurisdiction in terms of enforcing the law on the road.
According to Tendekule, the centre will play a pivotal role, especially when it comes to accidents and later on as the project progresses will also help fight crime.
“The cameras are running 24-hours and in the process, all the behaviour of the road users are captured. The footage will be used in terms of accident reconstruction and investigations. It will help the Namibian police to prove the facts of what had transpired. It will also help in civil litigation, however, there are protocols that need to be followed to get the footage first,” he explained.
He added that the data they are collecting will be shared between all road safety sectors, seeing that this specific road has been earmarked for expansion.
He said, from their perspective, the stretch between Usakos and Swakopmund was identified as the third highest accident-prone area in a study conducted by students from the United States for the Motor Vehicle Accident Fund.
According to Tendekule, the road between Oshivelo and Ondangwa is the highest accident zone followed by Okahandja to Otjiwarongo. However, he said they opted to partner with Arandis because the groundwork was already done.
“This has never been done or tested in the country. It is a first of its kind. We will still have some teething problems but will know what to do once we roll it out to the rest of the country,” he said.
Arandis’ chief executive officer, Stanley Norris also said the town is pleased that the project has become a reality and that Arandis now also has the opportunity not only to create jobs but can also play a greater part in saving lives.
“We are happy to be part of this project and it is welcoming to know that offenders will face the law. There is no getting away from the cameras like in the past.” – email@example.com