Input sought on bus video plan

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Thursday, May 29, 2014

VICTORIA, British Columbia—BC Transit is looking for input on its plan to install video surveillance, according to a report in the Times Colonist.

The BC Transit authority plans to issue a request for a contract in late summer to install and operate a digital surveillance system for the authority’s buses, BC Transit spokeswoman Meribeth Burton said in the report. The potential cost was not immediately available.

A draft of that request has been released to seek industry feedback prior to issuing the request for proposals. Comments and recommendations will be accepted by BC Transit until June 12.

“We want to gauge which vendors are interested in providing proposals, what kind of hardware and software solutions we are going to need to install, and then [look at] the ongoing monitoring,” Burton said in the report.

The draft document said the program would be implemented first in Victoria and Duncan. Cameras will be monitoring BC Transit buses inside and out in an effort to improve safety and reduce vandalism.

Because it would be cost-prohibitive to put cameras in all 1,030 buses in the fleet at the same time, BC Transit is planning to roll out video surveillance as new buses are brought in, according to the report.

Violence on buses, disputes over fares, and vandalism are among concerns facing the corporation, drivers and passengers. BC Transit delivers bus services throughout the province, outside of metropolitan Vancouver.

Cameras were used temporarily in some buses in Victoria during a BC Transit pilot project in 2011.