The Dallas Police Department has deployed Firetide’s mesh networks for video surveillance, in a bid to combat crime throughout the city’s downtown business district.
The police department selected a solution from BearCom, a Dallas-based wireless system integrator, which included Firetide wireless mesh nodes, Sony IP cameras, and BridgeWave transfer units. The wireless video surveillance network was funded by a grant from the Meadows Foundation.
The surveillance system covers approximately 30% of the downtown area and delivers live 24-hour monitoring in City Hall and Dallas’ police headquarters. The system will only be used in public areas with visible camera placement and street level signage.
Our goal was to reduce crime in the downtown business district and to combat the perception of inadequate safety measures in the area, said deputy police chief Tom Lawrence. While we did not go into the project with the concept of wireless, the benefits quickly became obvious: the mesh enables quick setup of the network without a complete overhaul, while providing excellent bandwidth and security for video streams.
The wireless surveillance system primarily serves as crime deterrence and as an investigation tool for evidence collection. Image quality is paramount as detectives need to be able to read license plates from 300 yards away and provide night-time monitoring.
In addition, most of the cameras have motorized controls so officers sitting in a remote monitoring location can move the camera lens in any direction and zoom in for a closer look.