A specially equipped car started sweeping through Geneva’s boulevards photographing and recording car license plates. The owners of those found to be parked without valid tickets will be sent a fine. The car, adorned with special camera equipment invented by the Dutch firm Arvoo, is faster and more systematic than its human equivalent.
The “Scan Car” is far more effective than a warden. According to Tribune de Genève, while a human can check around 80 cars an hour, the “Scan Car” can photograph 1,000 in the same time. The car, which was loaned by the technology provider to test the system, is recognizable by its Dutch license plates. It will roam white and blue zones in central Geneva (Saint-Gervais, Cité, Bastions and Tranchées-Rive) until 25 November 2016.
As license place photographs are taken they enter a database where they are compared with data from high-tech parking meters and a list of cars with registered resident parking permits. If the meter is not sufficiently charged or the car does not have a parking permit, then it is flagged and a fine is sent to the owner. Even the plates of cars parked close together can be read. “A space of 30cm is enough” said one of the engineers of the system that employs 24 cameras.
The results of the test will be used to determine if the technology is effective enough to be deployed more widely. According to Tribune de Genève, 60% of road users in Geneva don’t pay when they park.
In addition, the city has looked at concerns about privacy and given clearance.

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