Monday, February 11, 2013

CTA installs high-definition cameras in older rail cars

The Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) has begun a seven-month long project to install high-definition cameras in approximately 850 existing, older model rail cars to assist law enforcement and deter crime.

CTA's newest generation of rail cars, the 5000 series, has cameras on every car. Those rail cars have been deployed on the Pink Line and are currently replacing rail cars on the Green and Red lines. Now, CTA will retrofit its older 2600- and 3200-series rail cars with new surveillance cameras. Each rail car will be equipped with an on-board recording device and four 360-degree high definition cameras, which provide the same amount of surveillance coverage as the seven cameras installed on the 5000 series rail cars.

"We're already seeing what impact cameras on all CTA rail cars will have in deterring crimes and assisting police in the apprehension of those committing crimes on and off our system," said CTA President Forrest Claypool. "In the span of eight months, with less than 15 percent of rail fleet equipped with cameras and operating on three of our eight rail lines, images pulled from our 5000 series rail cars have assisted police in the apprehension of at least 14 offenders in connection with 15 cases. With more cameras, we will be able to step up our efforts to fight crime on the system."

CTA has added thousands of cameras to its video surveillance network. More than 3,600 cameras are now installed across the rail system, including train stations. By late 2013, the agency's rail fleet of 5000-, 3200- and 2600-series rail cars will all be equipped with multiple surveillance cameras and on-board recording devices.