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Police will use ANPR to target offenders

By The Cornishman  |  Posted: September 12, 2013

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A PROACTIVE traffic operation, aimed at vehicles that may be linked to crime or those that may be committing document offences such as driving without insurance, is taking place in West Cornwall this September.

The operation is centred on the use of a marked police vehicle fitted with Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR).

This technology identifies vehicles that are of interest to the police.

It uses cameras attached to the police vehicle to read number plates on passing traffic, and then links in with various computer systems to provide instant information for the officers.

The vehicle will be based at Penzance for just over a month and will be widely used – on a 24/7 basis – targeting roads throughout Penwith.

PC Pete Allen, from Penzance police, said: "This deployment is about targeting our resources to ensure we get the best results and making sure we focus on those committing offences.

"The vast majority of people use the roads safely and appropriately but a small minority do not and it is these people we wish to target.

"We always advise drivers to ensure their vehicles are in a roadworthy condition and are properly insured with valid tax and a current MoT."

Police have a range of sanctions available depending on the nature of the offence, ranging from words of advice or driver improvement courses, up to court appearances for the most serious or repeat offences.

Drivers using a vehicle without insurance, or those without an appropriate driving licence, may find their vehicles being seized at the roadside by police.

They will face recovery and storage fees to get the vehicle back.

"The ANPR vehicle is an excellent tool to assist us and we expect to make full use of its capabilities while it is based at Penzance," said PC Allen.

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