The License Plate Reader system mounted
to the rear trunk of an Indiana State Police
Indiana State Police
(Versailles, Ind.) – You may want to say “cheese” the next time an Indiana State Police cruiser passes you on the road.
The state police have introduced a new technological tool to aid in keeping unlicensed drivers off Hoosier highways. It is a cruiser-mounted License Plate Reader camera system which began use with a pilot program earlier this year.
The $22,000 device secured to a cruiser’s trunk deck of a cruiser can scan up to 1,800 license plates each minute, whether they are moving or parked.
Out of Indiana’s four million licensed drivers, more than 252,000 have had their licenses suspended temporarily or for their entire lives. A lack of a license does not always keep those people of the road, however.
“We’re very excited to put this technology to use in Indiana. People who drive with a suspended or revoked license pose an increased risk to the responsible licensed drivers in Indiana. This technology will undoubtedly save lives by helping our troopers identify unlicensed drivers and get them off the road,” said commander of the Indiana State Police Operations Support Division Major Brent Johnson.
According to a state police news release, the LPRs will be linked to the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles database by the end of 2011. The system will cross check those records and alert a trooper when it identifies a vehicle whose registered owner has a suspended or revoked driver’s license or is registered to an operator who has been deemed a habitual traffic violator.
It will also been able to notice license plates expired for over 30 days.
The system could have other uses, such as identifying vehicles which are the subject of current AMBER or Silver Alerts.
After several months of refinements, the LPR system can read both in-state and out-of-state plates with reduced potential for false alarms.
Troopers in southeast Indiana are not equipped with the technology, yet. Only four of the LPR systems are currently in use in Indiana at state police posts in Lowell, Bremen, Putnamville, and Sellersburg.
The LPRs were purchased with grant funding from the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.