25. June 2012 09:35
Recently the Wilmington Police Department in North Carolina has increased traffic enforcement laws in areas of the city where crime is at its worst. This strategy is to make police presence clearly known by concentrating patrols in high-crime areas and cracking down on traffic violations to deter thieves and thugs. Last year the city introduced a system called ShotSpotter which sends the gunfire location directly to officers in the field the moment a gun goes bang. Wilmington police follow a model called "D-DACTS" also known as Data Driven Approaches to Crime and Traffic Safety. This model explains that crimes such as burglary and robbery are committed using a vehicle to commit the crime and then flee, so the chances of intercepting a vehicle that is enroute to a crime or leaving one is greater when police stop more cars. This model is also built on documented statistics between the relationship of crime and crashes.
"If you got a fish-finder and it says all the fish are here, that's where you're going to go fishing," said Captain Jim Varrone, commander of police department's northwest patrol division. Every couple of weeks, Barry Coburn, the Wilmington Police Department's analyst, will draw up a new map that defines areas of the city that are most affected by crimes and wrecks. Where these two hot-spots overlap, officer's then target their enforcement efforts in these areas concentrating on the time of day when both occur most often.
Law enforcement agencies around the US have duplicated these methods in their communities, in fact in Baltimore, MD after a 10 month period of using this method to fight crime and traffic violations, police actually saw an improvement in traffic - with 373 fewer crashes than the same period a year prior.
For more information, read the article "Police use traffic patrols in high-crime areas as deterrent" written by Brian Freskos, Star News Online.
Laser Technology is dedicated to helping officers around the world enforce traffic safety, read more on what we have done throughout the years and continue to do to help achieve this goal at LTI Traffic Safety.