Closed-circuit Television (CCTV) cameras are helping police to monitor and resolve crimes, with almost 100 incidents of anti-social activity recorded by cameras last year.
The issue was tabled for discussion at a recent meeting of the CCTV Control Centre of the Police Department of the Ministry of Public Security, when the centre’s work over the past year was summarised and plans for this year were outlined.
The meeting was chaired by the director of the CCTV Control Centre, Colonel Khonesy Naovalath.
Deputy Director Lieutenant Colonel Bolivong Vongluanglath said that over the past year the centre had set up an emergency hotline which members of the public could call 24 hours a day to leave messages.
This enabled the relevant departments to coordinate and address incidents in response to calls about accidents, drug addiction, gambling, theft, embezzlement, fraud, fire, and human trafficking.
The hotline was also available for people to report physical harassment, rioting, vandalism, vehicle damage and other crimes.
To date, 1,535 CCTV cameras have been installed nationwide, with 1,079 positioned in Vientiane to enable enhanced surveillance.
Cameras have been installed around Party and state buildings and on busy roads for the monitoring of traffic flow in the rush hour.
Police have been able to identify suspects through the use of CCTV cameras and have dealt with 95 cases involving 43 accidents, 36 thefts, and two robberies.
The CCTV Control Centre in cooperation with other police departments has recorded 2,672 incidents, in which 333 people were arrested and 16,900,000 amphetamine pills, 10 bags of crystal methamphetamine (ice), two bags of heroin and 11 guns were seized.
Despite these successes, police would like to see more CCTV cameras installed, especially in Vientiane.
The cameras help to improve security and assist with crime prevention and control, especially robbery, traffic accidents, and motorbike racing on the city’s roads.
Police use the cameras to observe and record incidents and support their investigations into crimes, traffic violations and accidents.
Cameras are also used to help police track down vehicles after hit-and-run accidents when drivers flee the scene. The cameras enable members of the public to turn to the police for help in an emergency, as footage recorded can help track down thieves or other offenders.
The system also allows police officers in the command centre to monitor and resolve any disturbances that may arise.
VIENTIANE TIMES/ASIA NEWS NETWORK