Tag Archives: urban management

Seeing To Your Safety

Update On Our CCTV Camera Network

Crime is a sombre reality in South Africa that costs us dearly. Emotionally, living in fear drains us and financially, unplanned expenses due to theft can leave us grasping at straws. To do our part in creating a safer space for us all to share we are expanding and upgrading the CCTV camera network in the Elsies River City Improvement District (ERCID). 

The expansion supports our other public safety activities by sustainably decreasing criminal activity. 

In conjunction with the City of Cape Town, The SAPS, Neighbourhood Watch groups, local businesses and private individuals, we are a pivotal member of a public safety network with cameras that have eyesight over the critical locations of our CID. 

Allowing us to see the entire  Elsies River City Improvement District and intervene in all types of crimes to make our community safer.

Organized criminal activity targeting theft and vandalism of electrical components cost Eskom an estimated R69 000 000 in the last 18 months alone according to CEO  Andre de Ruyter. The damages to local businesses caused by interrupted power are incalculable, especially in mixed-use and industrial areas like the ERCID

The Elsies River City Improvement District’s road and communications infrastructure is also being crippled by vandalism and robbery, resulting in key road intersections, cell phone towers, and fibre networks being rendered inoperable. 

By expanding our CCTV surveillance we hope to be a significant contributor to creating a collaborative city-wide surveillance system that will prevent, identify, and neutralise criminal activity in real-time. We also know that our systems will help lawyers bring more criminals to justice and alleviate some of the load on our judicial system as they make the conviction process clearer and quicker. 

Our network is so effective due to our multifaceted approach to both the camera hardware and the data management of the surveillance systems. Our cameras are monitored on a 24/7 basis by a centralised control centre meaning we can track and stop criminal activity across districts in real-time. 

Our Cameras 

We use three types of cameras, some with infrared capabilities to see even in the dark.

– Pan Tilt Zoom (PTZ) cameras – These can be rotated by our trained operators to track people acting suspiciously even after they think they have walked out of frame.

– Licence Plate Recognition (LPR) cameras – These are static cameras reading licence plates of vehicles.  The CID belongs to a recognised, well-organised user group that holds a database of suspicious vehicles.  Our LPR software generates alerts when such vehicles enter our Improvement District and place us on high alert.  Should the occupants act suspiciously we have the option of alerting the local SAPS sector patrol vehicles.

– Static cameras enabled with artificial intelligence functionality – These are static cameras and can be focused on hotspots or boundary areas such as fences.  The cameras detect the movement of vehicles and people and alert our control room and patrol vehicles of such activity.

 Our Data Management

  • Our Artificial Intelligence Cameras and Software detects even the slightest movements which help our personnel see potentially hidden persons and suspicious activities.  
  • Video Analytics can be used to interpret, study and project criminal behavioural patterns which help us aid the SAPS to bring down the syndicates that are disrupting our peace. 

Our expansion of the CCTV network is one example of how we are trying to make our community a more profitable business and residential node by creating holistic urban regeneration programmes. 

Landlords, business owners and residents of the ERCID can expect: 

  • A continued effort to decrease crime. 
  • Targeted intervention by our public safety teams
  • Improved response time
  • 24/7 monitoring by our control room.
  • Foot and vehicle patrol teams, law enforcement officers and the police equipped with essential live information to improve arrest rates. 
  • Prevention of more incidents due to the improved directing of resources. 
  • Reduced false reporting of incidences due to our ability to validate the claim instantly.
  • Progress on creating a Unified City-Wide Public Safety Network.

We are improving our public safety plan by: 

  • Surveying the entire ERCID to identify vulnerable points to inform the next extension of our CCTV network. 
  • Targeting public safety efforts on infrastructure crime to safeguard the continuous supply of energy, water, sanitation, communication infrastructure and access to transportation.
  • Implementing mechanisms to alert our management and public safety teams to early warning signs of threats so that the distribution of our safety resources can be optimised.  

Our sophisticated CCTV cameras use the latest technological advancements so we can streamline our prevention and intervention efforts and help bring criminals to justice.

The manufacturing, education, property, hospitality and public transport industries form the backbone of our community’s livelihoods. Ultimately, our goal is to protect the people and the resources of the institutions they serve within the Elsies River City Improvement District.  

With your help and investment, we step closer to a safer South Africa every day. And so many of you already do remarkable work in the ERCID. We would love to hear your #GoodNews and how you are making our area a better place. 

To share your story with us and stand a chance to be featured in one of our future newsletters email us at media@geocentric.co.za

If you have any safety concerns to report, please contact one of the following numbers:

·       10111 – SAPS (South African Police Services)

·        107 – City of Cape Town Disaster Management

·        021 565 0900 – Geocentric Control Room 

Our Speeding Awareness Initiative

NO NEED TO SPEED

It’s no mystery that for many of us, a work commute is an unavoidable and chaotic part of our lives. Shockingly,  1 third of all deaths on our roads are caused by motor pedestrian collisions at speed. Closely followed by passenger deaths, making up 32% of road fatalities. This leaves countless families shattered simply because drivers were in a rush. Our speeding initiative shares our top insights on how to curb speeding in your area.

A common occurrence we see daily in the Elsies River City Improvement District (ERCID) is this. Imagine there is a truck or a visitor is pulling into an opposite bay, and you are a driver speeding. You overtake the truck quickly but don’t see the pedestrians walking in front of the vehicle. Leaving you with 0 reaction time to brake.

This causes a potentially fatal collision for the pedestrian. Derails the driver’s life who is liable to criminal charges. Costs the business cleaning up the accident dearly. Most importantly, it is incalculably devastating to the passengers, drivers, and pedestrians’ families.

The solution to stopping speeding? Simple, slow down.

Every morning and afternoon, thousands of dedicated employees make their journey to work by foot, taxi, bus, and car. Here is the good news – we have a simple solution. Simply slow down, pay attention and obey our speeding laws and safer South African streets are just around the corner.

Elsies River City Improvement District – Keeping our streets free of debris

As the ERCID we are helping to stop speeding by:

  • Making sure all traffic and speeding signs are clearly visible and in good condition.
  • Continuing to develop creative ways of implementing sustainable road safety strategies. We are also working together with the Elsies River City Improvement District population to adjust these programmes to your specific needs.
  • Collaborating with the City of Cape Town to implement and maintain traffic speed enforcement measures. These include cameras, speed management obstructions and traffic officers patrolling the greater ERCID area.

As a driver, you can help us curb speeding by:

  • Slowing down. In industrial areas, the National Road Traffic Act states that drivers should not exceed 60 km/h. This ensures that you have sufficient time to react to unforeseen situations and will avoid unnecessary fines.
  • Remaining aware and vigilant. Keep your eyes on the people, other drivers, and potential obstructions in your line of sight and off your cell phone. 
  • Being aware that the ERCID is an industrial area and likely to have pockets of congestion throughout the day. Be mindful to allow yourself more time to get where you are going.
  • Being patient. We have many slow-moving vehicles carrying remarkably heavy loads that are too large to manoeuvre quickly so don’t pass when it is not 100% safe.
  • Our streets are lined with driveways, side streets and loading bays that trucks need to turn into. Please do not park in any of these zones, as this will lead to a traffic jam until you are found and move your car out the way to safety.
  • Maintain a safe following distance. If you are unsure of what this is for the different vehicle types, watch this excellent video guide on “The Time Distance Ratio”   by Arrive Alive.

As a business owner, you can:

  • Create parking zones for clients and 3rd party suppliers. This will prevent them from needing to slow down and to park either in an open employee bay or illegally on the opposite side of the road.
  • Respect the boundary markings of roads. Red lines, pavements, pedestrian walkways, and cyclist paths are carefully calculated to keep the flow of people into the area safe and swift. Please do not park vehicles in these designated areas.
  • Make provisions for pedestrians so your employees and the employees of the businesses around you are not forced to endanger themselves by walking on the road.
  • All your employees who come to work in their own vehicles should be educated on the dangers of speeding and carpool where they can to save on parking space.
  • Ensure that all employees who need parking bays are provided with a place to put their vehicles. The best time to make these alterations would be during a Facade Improvement intervention.
  • If you are a fleet manager – have multiple company cars or have an internal employee transport system – introduce a telematics system. This will allow you to target your speeding awareness interventions to the drivers who need them.

According to the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC), traffic accidents cost our already strained South African economy a whopping R176 Billion in 2020. We also missed the target set out in the UN decade for action road safety amendment by miles, despite a months-long lockdown that restricted movement.

Traffic Enforcement 

Traffic enforcement is a last resort for the Elsies River City Improvement District. While we would prefer not to implement these measures, we are charged with the duty of making the ERCID area safer for all. Traffic enforcement to curb speeding vehicles will be a necessary consequence if we all don’t slow down.

In a time where so many of us are only just scraping by financially, we simply shouldn’t waste money paying expensive traffic fines for speeding incidents that are 100% easily avoidable.

We truly believe that together we can make the roads of the Elsies River City Improvement District a safer space for our community and would love to hear your #GoodNews and suggestions, simply mail us at info@ercid.co.za    

If you have any safety concerns to report, please contact one of the following numbers:

  • SAPS (South African Police Services) – 10111 
  • City of Cape Town Disaster Management. – 107
  • Geocentric Control Room – 021 565 0900

Plenty of Action and Activity in ERCID

Not only are the regular and customary matters for which the respective teams of the ERCID are responsible, attended to and taken care of in Elsies River, but there are also heart-warming cases of people going the extra mile and beyond the call of duty. 

Following are some of the issues that have in the last weeks been addressed: 

Illegal dumping: 

At least 16 cases of illegal dumping were discovered and dealt with by the ERCID during the past weeks. In all these cases, the ERCID Cleaning and Maintenance Team cleared and remove the dumped matter as soon as possible. The ERCID management asks all businesses and property owners to please act responsibly and to not dump refuse on the streets of our Improvement District.  Illegal Dumping carries a very heavy fine and if caught the ERCID will act decisively. We also ask that if anyone witnesses illegal dumping to immediately report the details of the dumping and persons/vehicles responsible to our 24 hour control room at 086 15 15 800.

The following list includes these respective incidents: 

  • In front of A.K Wholesalers, corner of 6th Avenue and Halt Road. More incidents of illegal dumping occurred in the area.  
  • In front of Speedy, corner of 19th Street and Epping Avenue. Public Safety Officers discovered illegal dumping at the bus terminus.  
  • In front of no. 49 Consani Avenue. 
  • Corner of Epping Avenue and 20th Street.  
  • Corner of Epping Avenue and 19th Street. 
  • At the terminus, 1st Avenue and 20th Street respectively. More incidents of illegal dumping occurred in the area.  
  • In front of A.K Wholesalers, corner of 6th Avenue and Halt Road. More incidents of illegal dumping occurred in the area. 
  • At the Green garage, corner of 20th Street and Epping Avenue. 
  • In front of MTD House, no. 6, 11th Street. 
  • Public Safety Officers discovered illegal dumping at 6th Avenue and 14th Street respectively. 
  • At 14th Street and at the corner of 20th Street and Epping Avenue respectively. 
  • At the corner of 20th Street and Epping Avenue. 
  • At the corner of 19th Street, 16th Street and Epping Avenue. 
  • At the corner of 19th Street and Epping Avenue. 

Fire at 19th Street 

Our vigilant CCTV camera operators spotted a fire on 19th Street at the corner of Epping Avenue in Elsies River. The business premises that were affected, were Abil Services, Recycle Company, Speedy Services and the petroleum garage. The fire started at the recycling premises and spread to the adjacent building.

The ERCID Public Safety Officer, Forensics, SAPS and The City of Cape Town Building Inspector was on-scene.  The fire brigade swiftly completed the operation at the site.  

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Stolen vehicle recovered 

The ERCID Public Safety patrols located a vehicle that had been stolen in Bellville and was found in Consani Road next to the scrap yard. Elsies River Police were on the scene and the owner confirmed the tracker showed that the vehicle had come into Elsie River around 03h00. It was also not the first time his car had got hijacked. 

Two suspects caught after robbing a female: Corner 7th Avenue and 11th Street 

While on patrol our ERCID Public Safety Officers apprehended two suspects who robbed an unknown female on the Corner of 7th Avenue and 11th Street Elsie River. With the assistance of our CCTV camera network two males and a female were spotted in 12th Street. The one male was walking with his arm around the female’s waist on the Corner on 12th Street and 7th Avenue while the other male was a distance behind them. They two males then suddenly robbed  the lady of her belongings.  The ERCID response vehicles were informed and proceeded to the scene. The Public Safety officers confirmed that when the two suspects saw them, they threw the unknown female’s wallet into the yard of one of the businesses but the  two suspects were apprehended on the Corner of 8th Avenue and 12th Street.  The police arrived shortly after, and two suspects were apprehended. 

Cleaning 

ERCID Cleaning and Maintenance Team was deployed for the following respective purposes: 

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  • to clear and remove illegal dumping at the canal, Coleman Street; 
  • to cut grass at the 16th Street canal. They managed to pick litter at Consani Avenue;  
  • to pick litter and sweep curbs in the area; 
  • to de-weed and maintain the Coleman Street garden. They managed to pick litter, sweep curbs and remove illegal dumping in the area; 

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Urban management

Our Social Work Team in partnership with NGO MES was contracted to clean the 16th Street canal (12th Street up to Coleman Street). 

City of Cape Town’s Roads and Storm Water Department performed the following actions: 

  • replaced a missing fire hydrant cover at the corner of 7th Avenue and 12th Street. 
  • repaired a burst water pipe at the corner of 8th Avenue and 19th Street. 
  • replaced an underground water pipe at Coleman Street 
  • repaired of a burst water pipe in front of Central park, no 165 Epping Avenue. 

City of Cape Town’s Electricity Department repaired the following: 

  • Streetlights at Consani Avenue. 
  • A broken lamp of a streetlight at the corner of 6th Avenue and 23rd Street

S.M Construction was contracted by the City of Cape Town reinstate the road surface at 19th Street. 

The City of Cape Town’s contractors repaired the following: 

  • roadway at the corner of 11th Street and Epping Avenue. 
  • the pavement in front of PescaTech, 6th Avenue. 

ERCID adds value to Look and Feel of Elsies River

Thanks to the commitment of all who are involved in the Elsies River Improvement District drive, strides of progress are being made in various ways. 

 

The accompanying images tell the story of how problems like illegal dumping and the confiscation of stolen trolleys and wheelie-bins are successfully addressed by the teams. 

 

The Public Safety issues that are addressed during the day-to-day activities, include problems related to the following:  

  • Illegal Dumping 
  • Engaging with the public (public safety officers engage with all people in the public space to ensure that everyone is aware of the ERCID’s presence and activities. This is done in conjunction with and in support of law enforcement officers who oversee such activities. If something suspicious is found, the law enforcement agents and/or SAPS act accordingly. 
  • Bin scratching  
  • CCTV in action  
  • Trolley and wheelie-bin confiscation 

 

The Cleaning issues include: 

  • Litter picking 
  • De-weeding 
  • Sweeping streets 

 

On the Urban management side, the ERCID Management continues to log all urban and infrastructure defects as C3 notifications with the City of Cape Town for correction. The accompanying photo collage shows the result of these actions as the City and other partners address issues. 

 

Photographs: 

Demonstrating the variety of activities that the ERCID engages in, sometimes in collaboration with teams of the CCT and law enforcement agencies. 

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