jinkOn the Stalinstraat in Genk, decibels sometimes dare to climb: loud sports cars, riots, and noisy quad bikes or motorbikes regularly make noise. The city of Genk wants to do something about it, so they put four microphones near the cameras on the street. It is the first city in Flanders to record noise in this way.
Mayor Wim Dries (CD&V) says: “It’s hard to keep up with complaints about the excessive noise on the Stalenstraat. Loud cars, motorbikes and quads are causing sleepless nights for many Genk residents and making them feel unsafe. That is why we are now starting a pilot project for four Microphones placed near the cameras on the Stalenstraat. From a certain number of decibels, the microphone starts recording. For 30 seconds, the audio records and the camera makes a sound,” explains the mayor. The pilot project is being implemented in collaboration with vzw Slimme Regio Vlaanderen and technology partners Nokia, myCSN and G4S.
Very loud cars are detected by microphone and captured by cameras. However, the new microphones do not violate privacy legislation. “We’re making a short video with the license plate on it, but nothing has been done with it at the moment because it wasn’t possible and it was allowed,” says Wim Drees. “We can already analyze the images and thus perform the targeted actions. If we notice that the volume is very loud every Friday night, we can have more police patrols at that time, so it is not yet possible to write PVs based on the video images, the police can only intervene when it has been Someone caught red-handed. We hope he will do more with the help of the new cameras,” it seems.
The focus is not on catching annoying drivers, but on fine-tuning the technology.
Cameras and Microphones is a one-year pilot project with interim evaluations. Peter Vandeurzen of vzw Smart Region Flanders says: “The cameras have been installed on the Stalenstraat since the beginning of 2021. So they will stay in place and we can now use them in this pilot. I kept the pilot project to ensure people privacy,” it seems. also on catching annoying drivers,” adds Jacques Vermeulen of Nokia. We want to test this system and prove that it works. Over the next year, we want to fine-tune the technology so that all Flanders can finally work with it.”
It is already clear that Genk will not remain the only city where silencer cameras measure noise pollution. Mayor Wim Dris says: “We may have the scoop here, but all over Flanders I hear mayors react with enthusiasm and curiosity towards the pilot project. This may be the key to tackling noise pollution,” it seems.
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