CIO East Africa (Nairobi)

27 August 2014

Uganda Installs Axis Cameras for Weighbridge Automatic Number Plate Recognition

The Uganda National Roads Agency (UNRA), Computer Point Limited and Axis have today announced the installation of a camera system in weighbridges across the country. The implementation has seen the integration of Axis network cameras with UNRA's Mirasys Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) system.

The deployments add advanced image quality and distributed intelligent video capabilities to the vehicle registration system that had previously been deployed at the weighbridges. This combination of products allows for capturing of each vehicle's number plate as it passes through the weigh station. When an offence is committed or it becomes necessary to track a particular vehicle, the footage can be searched using the number plate as a reference.

Part of UNRA's mandate involves the protection of the road infrastructure from deterioration so as to minimize road maintenance and reconstruction costs in general. In order to ensure that road users, specifically heavy vehicle operators, do not damage road surfaces and do not make the roads less safe for other road users, UNRA enforces vehicle load control.

This load control takes place at weighbridge stations at various locations throughout Uganda. All commercial vehicles weighing 3.5 tonnes or more passing through one of these stations may be directed to the weighbridge scales so that a controller can determine whether or not the vehicle exceeds the legal axle and/or the gross vehicle weight limits.

Tracking in High Definition

Weighbridge stations in the cities of Lukaya, Mbale and Busitema were selected for the deployment of an entire monitoring system comprising a Network Video Recorder, Axis Network cameras and Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) system.

"An IP-based solution is simple to deploy. The open architecture of Axis cameras makes it easy to integrate with other products," explains Computer Point Director, Jinu Thomas. "Our customer required excellent image quality, automated focus and zoom capabilities and advanced recording features. We found Axis cameras to be a perfect fit for this installation."

The type of Axis Cameras selected by Computer Point for the weighbridge station surveillance are designed for demanding applications, such as the harsh conditions at the Ugandan Roads Authority sites. The cameras are outdoor ready and offer high resolution, optical zoom and high-speed pan/tilt performance for coverage of wide areas and great detail when zooming in. Axis illuminators provide additional light to ensure optimal performance.

"Axis Cameras, along with Variable Message Signs and License Plate Recognition solution exceeded my expectations. It helps us to monitor all activities at and around the weighbridge stations and the trucks that pass through the facilities," says James Ngobe, Systems Analyst, UNRA.

"UNRA Control Room Officials monitor the footage of trucks entering and exiting the weighbridge lanes. In the event that it becomes necessary to track a particular vehicle, the ANPR application can be searched using specific number plate details," says Thomas. "The weigh stations are vital elements of a safer roads network. These surveillance solutions provide much needed support to simplify the management of these sites."

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