There’s nothing new about people resorting to guerrilla tactics to tackle dangerous driving – people have even disguised bird boxes as speed cameras, but James Thom has gone a step further with his AI-powered DIY speed camera.
James’s code turns any webcam or camera phone into a virtual speed camera. It overlays the current speed so you can see which vehicles are speeding in real time. you can watch it in action here.
The results of the community speed survey using this software was used to successfully persuade the council to install traffic calming measures on the road.
I want my own speed camera, but can’t write code…
If you like the idea of using speed camera data to lobby your local council about traffic calming measures , but don’t have the programming skills to build your own system like James did, help is at hand in the form of the Android Speedcam Anywhere app.
Speedcam Anywhere uses video from your phone to calculate the speed of a vehicle as well as its location. It generates a link which can be uploaded to police dashcam websites or used to campaign for traffic calming measures.
The app has not yet been Type Approved by the Home Office, so cannot issue speeding tickets, but evidence from the app can be presented to police forces so they can issue Anti-Social Driving Orders for Section 59 offences, where inconsiderate driving causes alarm and distress.
Rod King MBE, founder and campaign director of 20’s Plenty for Us, has described the system as a game changer: “Speedcam Anywhere bypasses the current resource bottlenecks associated with enforcement. We have police forces that desperately want to reduce road offences and speeding offences, but many will only prioritise minimal resources to the task.”
It is hoped the app will act as a deterrent because any of the people you drive past could be filming and reporting your speed – very different from drivers feeling they only have to comply with the law when approaching a speed camera or when someone in a hi-vis jacket at the side of the road is pointing a speed gun at them.
The app is available to download from SpeedcamAnywhere.com or the Google Play Store.
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