Smile, You're on Closed Circuit Camera
West Trenton, NJ - State troopers protecting the New Jersey Capitol Complex have just completed the first phase of a significant security upgrade with the addition of new surveillance technology providing a multitude of video feeds to State Police personnel monitoring the system. The most impressive part? By using the expertise of partners within the State Police and Treasury Department, the state saved an estimated half-million dollars in consultant and contractor fees, while realizing huge gains in security.
The NJSP State Governmental Security Bureau (SGSB) working with the Department of Treasury, Office of Treasury Technology (OTT) and the Interdepartmental Security Unit, (ISU) designed and installed new CCTV and network equipment to help ensure the safety and security of state workers, visitors to the Capitol Complex area, the State Police, and assigned security personnel. Project manager, Sgt. Rich Finneran, guided the mammoth effort since its inception.
Troopers conducted a program study and found that by leveraging existing Capitol Complex CCTV assets, strategically installing exterior pan, tilt, and zoom (PTZ) cameras, and adding digital video recorders (DVRs), a cost-effective, networked CCTV solution could be realized within the State Capitol Complex. A solution was then designed to mutually benefit all of the buildings, departments and agencies within the Capitol Complex.
The NJSP SGSB utilized a $400,000 federal Office of Domestic Preparedness grant to conduct the initial purchase and installation of cameras and DVRs.
The newly deployed CCTV system is monitored by a staff of eleven (11) Public Service Telecommunicators (PSTs) on a 24/7 basis. The PST's combined duties include; computer aided dispatch (CAD), radio and telephone communications (with 911 capabilities) and the monitoring of the State Capitol CCTV system. This combination of tasks, and the addition of the visual intelligence received from the CCTV system, has improved the ability of the State Police and guard personnel to respond within the Capitol Complex.
Within the participating system, each building locally records all video on their DVRs. The DVRs are linked on a network and monitored from the Central Monitoring Station (CMS). The CMS can control the pan, tilt and zoom functions of the building's mounted camera, watch for suspicious behavior, create alarm points, conduct building interior checks, and confirm a building's alarm status.
The PSTs currently monitor and conduct virtual tours with over 90 cameras. The area of coverage extends from the Delaware River across the Capitol Complex to East State Street. A facility in West Trenton and Sandy Hook are also monitored as part of this project. An additional installed base of 200 cameras (cameras that are already deployed and recording locally, but are not yet part of the networked system) will be added to the network in phases, and will be complete and monitored by October of 2006.
To date, the State Capitol Complex CCTV system has provided
evidence for, or assisted in: suspicious persons complaints,
criminal activity investigations, motor vehicle accidents,
aid to motorists, fire evacuation drills, pedestrian movement
support, delivery dock and warehouse control, and crowd observation.
The new implementation of CCTV virtual tours has allowed the State Police to receive current and actionable intelligence and has enhanced their decision-making ability when responding to critical incidents. This localized intelligence will serve to support both the regional activities of the NJSP Regional Operations Intelligence Center (ROIC) and the exacting, coordinated needs of the NJSP's "Cease Fire" initiative.
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