CCTV To Reduce Crime


NASSAU, The Bahamas — Officials of the Ministry of National Security Wednesday signed a $4.6 million contract for the installation of a “comprehensive” Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) Network that is expected to reduce crime and criminality.

Under the agreement, 243 cameras will be strategically deployed beginning in key locations and criminal “hot spots” in New Providence as a part of Phase I of a national CCTV programme.

Minister of National Security O.A.T. “Tommy” Turnquest said the installation of the network represents “another critical milestone” in the Government of The Bahamas’ “commitment to use state-of-the-art technology and proven methods to fight crime in our society and to enforce public safety.”

“More importantly, as a result of our intentional and deliberate planning and with the proper management framework in place, we are certain that the National CCTV Project – in concert with the other resources that have been provided to the Royal Bahamas Police Force – will have immediate impact by assisting with detecting and reducing crime, reducing the fear of crime, providing the police with intelligence to assist with the investigation of offences, and providing evidence that will assist with the prosecution of offenders which should all lead to an increase in public confidence in the police,” Mr. Turnquest added.

Mr. Turnquest said the Government has put all of the mechanisms in place to ensure that the Royal Bahamas Police Force has the appropriate radio dispatch, available manpower and required mobility to effectively monitor the network, and the capacity to respond rapidly and appropriately to incidents recorded by the cameras.

“Research has shown that the mere placement of CCTV cameras does not automatically guarantee a reduction in crime as many factors have to be considered,” Mr. Turnquest said. “This Government has ensured that the Police are fully equipped and we have facilitated the implementation of an Enhanced 919 Emergency Call System, implemented an Electronic Monitoring System for persons on bail and provided the Police Force with additional cars, motorcycles and bicycles.

“Further, we have amended applicable legislation to make evidence obtained by Closed Circuit Television recordings admissible in our courts of law,” he added.

Valued at $4,669,809.00, the contract was signed between the Government of The Bahamas (the Ministry of National Security acting on its behalf), and a consortium of firms headed by Lowe’s Security Limited, a Bahamian company that has partnered with Avrio RMS Group, a U.S. based Company, and Security Centres International Limited, based in the Cayman Islands.

“Lowe’s has been operating in The Bahamas for many years and is a well-established company in The Bahamas providing a wide range of security services,” Mr. Turnquest said.

Avrio RMS Group is a security solutions provider that has undertaken major projects in the United States, while Security Centres International recently concluded a major project of similar size and scope in the Cayman Islands, in conjunction with Avrio RMS Group.

“This recent experience in completing a similar project in a sister Caribbean nation with similar environmental conditions and concerns, was one of the attracting features for the selection of this consortium,” Mr. Turnquest added.

The contract not only covers the provision and installation of the 243 cameras, but also ancillary equipment, video management software, license-plate recognition software, all of the servers and storage devices, and the outfitting of the Command & Control Centre with furniture, fixtures and equipment, that will be located at Police Headquarters. Also included in the contract is the provision of training for the operators and users of the system.

Mr. Turnquest said the Bahamas Electricity Corporation (BEC) and the Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) will play key roles in ensuring the success of the project.

“The Government will contract with BTC to provide the WiFi Network for the project.  BTC, at their expense, will purchase and install the network, to provide connectivity for the cameras that will be a part of this project. The solution provided by BTC will ensure network connectivity between the cameras, the BTC Wide Area Network (WAN) Nodes, and the Command & Control Centre of the CCTV Project,” Mr. Turnquest said.

BTC will provide maintenance and support of the network for the duration of the contract. An Agreement will also be executed with BEC will cover the use their infrastructure for the mounting of the cameras and ancillary equipment, and for the provision of power.

“This initiative will go a long way in complementing and in some instances supplementing the efforts of the Commissioner of Police and the almost 3,000 men and women who risk their lives daily to ensure that our country is safe,” Mr. Turnquest added.

By Matt Maura
Bahamas Information Services