Radios help identify crime ‘hot spots’

Two-way radios are helping to identify crime hotspots as part of the Chesterfield Shopwatch scheme.

Mar 27, 2008
By Paul Jacques
Lisa Townsend

Two-way radios are helping to identify crime hotspots as part of the Chesterfield Shopwatch scheme.

Derbyshire Police has taken delivery of 100 portable two-way radios from communications specialists Zycomm which will give an instant communication loop between retailers, CCTV cameras and the police.

The two-way radio handsets offer ‘one-to-many’, instantaneous communication, allowing retailers to alert one another of any potential dangers.

The radio handsets will be controlled through a central command centre with ‘neoTerra Mobi-Message’ software, specifically designed for two-way radios. This software allows monitoring of radio usage, silent notification to command centre when a radio is switched on, texting or paging of all handsets and recording of transmissions.

The Chesterfield Shopwatch Scheme is a Chamber of Commerce initiative established around 12 years ago to increase police presence in town centres and to combat the increase in crime. The handsets will not only allow communication of key information to other Shopwatch users, but the local police will also carry handsets so that they have full understanding of any intervention required should an incident occur.

Andrew Bray, Shopwatch sales manager, Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire Chamber, commented: “The radios act as ‘ears’ and the cameras as ‘eyes’ – by using the radios to draw attention to any areas of activity, the CCTV cameras can be used to zoom in on the hot spot.”

When a Shopwatch member alerts other users of a potential disturbance, CCTV control immediately uses the nearest camera to zoom in on the incident.

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