Cameras that can read licence plate numbers and alert police in real time as to the location of stolen vehicles have proven so successful, the program will be expanded around Moreton Bay Region.
Mayor Peter Flannery said the crackdown on criminals had proven to be an instant and overwhelming success in partnership with the Queensland Police Service.
“Frankly I’m embarrassed that our region has one of the highest levels of vehicle theft in South-East Queensland and it’s something I want to end for our law-abiding citizens,” Mayor Flannery said.
“Each time a camera detects a vehicle on the list of stolen vehicles an automated email alert is shared immediately with local police and POLAIR, so we’re providing real time data to help police get real time results.
“We’re the only local government in South-East Queensland area that has this capability of automated alerts at this time, and I expect others will soon follow suit.
“By the end of June, we’ll have 30 detection cameras operational throughout the region with plans to expand this capability further, so if you steal a car expect to be caught and go to court.
“So far over the past 10 weeks, our cameras have helped identified more than 215 stolen vehicles to police.
“I honestly can’t praise police enough for the work they do, and Council is pleased to provide them with the enhanced service to support police response and investigations.
“Beyond the theft of property, these people are a danger on the streets and a nuisance in our communities.
“This program is a great example of how Council can work with other lead agencies to help prevent and reduce crime affecting our community.
“In 2018/19 we recorded 933 stolen vehicles, which is 33% more than Townsville on 702 - and the media are reporting Townsville as a crime hotspot.
“Our cameras are both fixed and mobile, with the flexibility to move them quickly to new locations, so there’s no such thing as a ‘safe route’ for offenders to commit these kinds of crimes.
“More than anything I want to ensure residents feel safe travelling on our roads, especially following the some of the horrific incidents we’ve seen lately involving stolen cars.”
Moreton Police District Superintendent John Hallam praised the valuable investigation tool, which is helping police apprehend offenders doing the wrong thing on our roads.
“This state-of-the-art camera technology is an important weapon in the local police arsenal not only to combat crime but also locate vehicles of interest,” he said.
“Moreton Bay Regional Council plays a significant role in partnership with Moreton District Police in making this region a safer place to live and work.”