Smart cameras will catch drivers who use phones while driving

One of the most common traffic violations while driving is using a mobile phone at the wheel. The situation, which is a problem in almost every part of the world, can also invite vital dangers. The difficulty of catching those who perform this action also makes it difficult to prevent.

The Australian police seem to have found the solution to this problem in artificial intelligence technology. New South Wales rolled out the world-first mobile phone detection cameras on Sunday, that detect the drivers who are using phones at the wheels.

Implemented in order to ensure traffic safety, the system in question follows the drivers’ signs of using mobile phones. If a traffic violation is detected, the camera takes a picture of the car. The photos taken by the camera are then verified by authorized personnel.

The detected drivers – illegally using a mobile phone – will only be warned for the first three months, after the detection systems are in operation. However, after the completion of this trial process, the penalties will become harder. Drivers caught by the cameras will be fined 344 Australian dollars (US$233), and five penalty points will be added to their driving license. Violations in school districts will amount to A$457 (US$310).

Authorities believe that this will reduce incidents of using phones at the vehicle. Bernard Carlon, transportation safety officer of the state of New South Wales, said, “Independent modeling has shown these cameras could prevent around 100 fatal and serious injury crashes over five years.” Although it is not possible to say whether this ambitious target will be achieved or not, it can be said that penalties will have a deterrent effect.

Australia’s solution can be effective in preventing accidents. However, this method seems to bring privacy concerns.

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