New invention to tackle defiant motorcyclists

Thailand Research Fund (TRF) has developed a smart image capturing and ticketing system that could automatically detect motorcyclists and pillion riders who do not wear crash helmets, and then issue them traffic tickets.

The new innovative system called Ja Choei Intelligent Detecting and Ticketing system was handed over to the Metropolitan Police Bureau for trial first at Suthisarn police station.

The system will be put in service in April with aim of catching and fining motorcyclists and pillion riders ignoring the police campaign for them to wear crash helmets for their safety as fatal accidents involving motorcycles tops all road accidents and resulted in highest casualties every year.

The innovation is hoped to help traffic police to strictly enforce the traffic rules and reduce the number of traffic violators, particularly motorcyclists.

According to statistics, 65% of traffic accidents and road related fatalities came from motorcycles.

TRF researcher Dr Mongkol Ekpanyapong said the automatic detection system could check whether the motorcycle riders and their passengers have worn crash helmets or not through using closed circuit cameras to capture them at the front and at the rear.

He said the system would lock the images of the motorcyclists and passengers who were not wearing safety helmets by using machine learning techniques. The images would then be sent back to the data base of the Traffic Police Division.

He recalled that TRF has captured numerous pictures of motorcyclists and passengers with and without helmets during the laboratory tests and forward to the computer to let it learn.

This was like teaching the kids to differentiate the images of motorcyclists and pillion riders with and without helmets which needed so many pictures until the computer could learn and tell the difference.

He said the cameras would be installed at five metres high which would be the best position to clearly and accurately capture the pictures of violators.

The images captured would be sent to automatic vehicle registration plate inspection system so traffic tickets woukd be automatically issued to the violators.

But traffic police will recheck the tickets for accuracy before they are sent out.

Deputy Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Bureau Pol Maj Gen Jirapat Phumichit said the system would be put on trial period in the area under the charge of Suthisarn police.

He said during the past six months, the system could detect the violators with high accuracy at 84 percent. There were 116 violators per hours.

He said the police will start using the system in April.

If the system works with positive results, it would be expanded to cover more locations, he added.

Source: Thai Public Broadcasting Service (Thai PBS)