Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Translink Eyeballing New Cameras


TransLink wants to install surveillance video cameras at all its West Coast Express stations, a decision prompted by terrorist bombings of the transit systems in London and Madrid.

The closed-circuit television system would cover the eight West Coast Express stations between Vancouver and Mission. TransLink hopes the move will bring increased security to the line.

"Recent terrorist attacks on the London and Madrid transit systems highlight the need for enhanced security of TransLink's commuter rail transportation system," reads a TransLink bid document issued this week. "... The significant role of CCTV in investigating the London terrorist attacks has highlighted the potential for CCTV to augment counter-terrorism strategies."

TransLink hopes to have a final cost estimate for the plan submitted by mid-July.

But CCTV systems may have a greater role in investigating crimes after they happen, as opposed to preventing them.

"A camera is probably not going to stop a crime," said SkyTrain CEO Doug Kelsey in a TransLink promotional video released earlier this week. "But a camera is absolutely instrumental, as it was in London, about the reconstruction and the ability to respond quickly to focus where you need to focus."