West Lancashire Borough Council’s 2018/2019 Annual CCTV report highlights the achievements of the Council’s CCTV operators.
Over the past seven years the Council has invested in community CCTV and expanded the scheme to install cameras in areas of priority.
The Council currently operates 106 community cameras and these are monitored 24 hours a day 365 days each year. Each of these camera locations has been reviewed and the report confirms that cameras are appropriately located.
The authority has recently published its annual report on the CCTV it operates, and key achievements highlighted for 2018/19 include:
- In total CCTV staff observed and assisted with 5509 “incidents”, over 100 a week
- Operators helped police officers arrest 264 people in West Lancashire
- Staff have assisted with 362 missing/vulnerable person responses
- They were involved in observing 633 cash deliveries/collections to ensure they were carried out without incident
- Operators also identified 1654 incidents themselves through their general monitoring
Cllr Kevin Wright Portfolio Holder for Health and Community Safety, said: “The report underlines the tremendous work of our CCTV operators. Their experience and close working relationship with the police helps to ensure we achieve great results from our system, and the staff deserve great praise for their efforts.
“The Council works with partners including the police to help keep crime low in West Lancashire. The fact the police make requests to use the footage shows how effective our CCTV system is and how it provides excellent value for money.”
In 2016, West Lancashire Borough Council’s CCTV system was awarded a five year Certificate of Compliance by the Surveillance Camera Commissioner. The certification shows that the Council’s CCTV system is managed appropriately and that the information gathered from the cameras is used in an appropriate manner and in accordance with the Surveillance Code of Practice guidelines.
One of the issues the Council must have due regard to is the privacy of private residents. The software that is used allows for parts of the CCTV image to be completely blanked out. There are several existing cameras where privacy settings are installed to completely blank out windows or whole houses so that residents’ privacy is ensured.