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How mobile photo enforcement works

Photo enforcement is part of the Winnipeg Police Service's overall strategy to make the city streets safe for drivers, pedestrians and cyclists alike. Mobile vehicles equipped with radar or lidar rapid-action cameras and enforcement equipment take photographs of vehicles violating Winnipeg's speed limits.

If an offender speeds past a photo enforcement equipped vehicle, it triggers the camera to take a picture of only the speeding vehicle and license plate as observed by the enforcement officer in the vehicle. These pictures, along with a traffic violation notice, are mailed to the registered owner of the speeding vehicle.

Photo enforcement is slightly different from conventional enforcement. The photo enforcement beam width is much narrower and aimed across the roadway. This method is more vehicle-specific. If more than one vehicle is in the beam, the system does not take a photograph

Diagram of how mobine photo enforcement works

The diagram above shows the difference in beam coverage between conventional enforcement that is shot down the road and photo enforcement utilizing radar that is shot across the road. As illustrated, the width of the conventional beam is quite large and may have several vehicles in the beam, which requires operator interpretation of the violation. With photo enforcement, the beam coverage is more vehicle-specific and eliminates the need for interpretation. With photo enforcement if more than one vehicle is in the beam the unit does not send the command to the camera to take a violation photo.

Lidar equipment, commonly referred to as laser, utilizes a much narrower beam of light that is cast down the road and is capable of targeting specific vehicles. In other words, it is target specific.  In both instances, only vehicles that are receding and are in violation are targeted.

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