Canadian License Plate Cameras Designed to Profit Government, Insurance Companies


Frances Willick
The Windsor Star
December 4, 2009

[efoods]WINDSOR, Ont. — Ontario Provincial Police will soon be cruising the province’s roads with sophisticated equipment that can automatically scan up to 7,000 licence plates per hour.

The Automatic Licence Plate Recognition system will be used to identify plates associated with stolen vehicles, plates that are reported missing, suspended or unissued or those with expired validation tags.

The system uses infrared cameras that can capture the plate numbers of vehicles approaching the cruiser from behind or from oncoming lanes. The number is then automatically run through a “hotlist” provided by the Canadian Police Information Centre database and a Ministry of Transportation database. That list is updated daily to reflect plates that are in poor standing.

If the scanned plate number registers a “hit” in the database, the system gives an audible signal to the officer, who can then identify the vehicle on the road and take action.

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